Effective EU and Member State policies for stimulating CCS

Heleen Groenenberg, Heleen de Coninck

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

48 Citations (Scopus)


Although CO2 capture and storage (CCS) is widely recognised as an option to mitigate climate change, consistent and effective EU policies to advance CCS are still absent. This paper discusses policy instruments for advancing large-scale deployment of CCS in the European Union, and evaluates them in a multi-criteria analysis. The EU Emissions Trading Scheme (EU-ETS) is a cost-effective instrument for limiting greenhouse gas emissions, but it is questionable whether its currently limited time horizon and short-trading periods will lead to substantial CCS diffusion. Complementary policies at the EU and the Member State level may repair this and provide sufficient incentives for CCS. Potential policies include financial instruments such as investment subsidies, a feed-in scheme, or a CO2 price guarantee, as well as a CCS mandate or a low-carbon portfolio. These policy options differ with respect to their environmental effectiveness, possible interaction with the EU-ETS, costs and financial risk involved, and their competition with other mitigation options. Interactions between Member State policies and the EU-ETS are smaller in scope than those of EU-wide policies, but they are more likely to lead to displacement of financial resources from other low-carbon technologies. In addition, national policies may pose a significant part of the financial risk of CCS operations with Member States, reducing the operator's incentive to innovate. Overall, structural policies at the EU level, such as a mandate or a low-carbon portfolio standard would be more conducive for realising large-scale deployment of CCS across the EU as well as more acceptable to environmental organisations.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)653-664
Number of pages12
JournalInternational Journal of Greenhouse Gas Control
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2008
Externally publishedYes


  • CO capture and storage (CCS)
  • Emissions trading (ETS)
  • Feed-in tariffs
  • Innovation
  • Low-carbon portfolio
  • Market-based instruments
  • Multi-criteria analysis
  • Public acceptance
  • Regulation
  • Subsidies


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