The Norwegian Parliament has granted US$1m of funding to a pilot plant that will use CO2 captured at CO2 Technology Centre Mongstad (TCM) to produce algae for the fish farming industry.

Seafood is Norway’s second-largest export, after oil and gas: in 2013 the value of Norwegian seafood exports stood at $10.2bn, with 95% of all fishing produce shipped to 150 different countries.

Demand for farmed fish is growing, but the aquaculture industry is facing a shortage of omega-3; the fatty acids used in fish feed. At current rates available omega-3 will be reduced in the coming years. To ensure the continued growth of Norwegian aquaculture, the industry is seeking alternative, sustainable sources of omega-3 that can be used in fish feed.

The aim of the pilot is to establish a manufacturing facility that can produce omega-3 and other high-value products from algal biomass, using pure CO2 captured at TCM and residual heat from the TCM plant.

TCM is the world’s largest facility for testing and improving CO2 capture, a joint venture between the Norwegian state, Statoil, Shell and Sasol. The centre comprises two CO2 capture plants each with a capacity to capture approximately 80,000 tonnes of CO2 from the nearby refinery or 20,000 tonnes from a gas-fired power plant.

Marine algae is the foundation of all omega-3 in the ocean, and the project will demonstrate that it can be effectively produced on land by photosynthesis using pure CO2 from TCM and sunlight.

Frank Ellingsen, Managing Director of TCM, said, “Carbon is becoming increasingly constrained in the global economy, whilst food demand from farmed fish is rising. It seems to be a smart solution to combine the two issues; using CO2, the by-product of the oil and gas sector, as a raw material for aquaculture. This project demonstrates the ongoing importance of TCM: as well as operating at the forefront of CO2 capture technology, we also play a role in the utilisation of CO2 for innovative new ‘circular economy’ business models.”

The test production of omega-3 rich raw material for fish feed from algae will start at Mongstad as early as next year, providing a sustainable solution to an environmental problem and a proactive alternative to the passive deposition of CO2.


gasworld magazine image

Cutting costs of CCS

Coming up in the August issue of gasworld magazine, Frank Ellingsen explores Cutting costs of CCS: The next generation of carbon capture technology.

A wave of new carbon capture and storage (CCS) technologies have the potential to dramatically cut the typically high costs of CCS for the industry, helping to accelerate the commercialisation of energy generation with CCS.

Read more about this, and a whole lot more in the field of carbon dioxide, in the August issue of gasworld magazine – coming to subscriber desks soon.