The European Commission has granted the status of Project of Common Interest (PCI) to the carbon dioxide (CO2) capture and transportation project in Lithuania and Latvia developed by the consortium named CCS Baltic Consortium. The consortium consists of Akmenės cementas AB, KN Energies, AB, Larvik Shipping AS, Mitsui O.S.K. Lines, Ltd. and SCHWENK Latvija SIA. 

This grant means that the project is recognized as a key cross-border infrastructure project which will significantly contribute to the implementation of the energy policy and climate goals of the European Union (EU). There are only 14 CO2 infrastructure projects listed in this award round as either PCI or Project of Mutual Interest (PMI) which is for key projects between the EU and non-EU countries. PCI and PMI can benefit from a number of advantages including eligibility for financial support named Connecting Europe Facility. 

The consortium was formed in 2022 with the purpose to create a carbon capture and storage (CCS) value chain in Lithuania and Latvia, which would include capture of CO2 generated in the industrial sector and onshore and offshore transportation to permanent storage sites. Many works such as analysis, feasibility studies and applications for this grant have been completed for the project, with commencement of operations scheduled in 2030. The PCI grant will surely accelerate future activities for materialization of the project. 

Currently in Lithuania as well as in neighbouring Poland and Latvia, underground CO2 storage is prohibited. Therefore, CCS can become an important option for companies in these countries facing challenges to achieve their decarbonization goals solely through process optimization. The consortium hopes that the CCS value chain created by the project will be used widely in the region and will contribute to resolution of climate issues on a larger scale.