Responding to the news that the Tees Valley has been chosen by Edinburgh University as the location for a carbon capture and storage (CCS) project, Stockton North’s Labour MP and co-Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group on CCS, Alex Cunningham, said:
“It is fantastic that Teesside has been chosen as the location for this important project. This decision confirms that the region will remain at the cutting edge of technological developments in this field and at the centre of efforts to reduce carbon emissions as the UK looks to fulfil its environmental commitments.
“However, while this project symbolises important progress, it is high time that the Government clearly prioritised energy spending objectives and confirmed their own future investment intentions for carbon capture and storage. It is hard to see how a lack of policy ambition for this technology can be reconciled with the recommendations of the Committee on Climate Change for power sector decarbonisation, or with the Government’s supposed desire to enable energy intensive industries to remain part of the UK economy in the longer term.
“The Government must therefore commit to leading on climate change and energy policy, and to driving innovation and investment, rather than sitting in the passenger seat attempting to give directions. Ministers need to clarify what shape their new approach to carbon capture and storage will take to provide certainty for business and industry, and I have written to the Business Secretary to ask that he does just that.
“With one of the largest clusters of manufacturing industries in the UK, investment in carbon capture and storage in places like Teesside – with the capacity and expertise to make such projects work – is vital if the UK is to protect vital energy intensive industries and secure a stable future.”