US, EU and Japan Lead in Carbon Capture and Storage Usage: Report

The European Union (EU) released a report sharing an ongoing trend in the usage of CCUS (Carbon Capture Utilization and Storage). The report gives an assessment of 2022 global industry. The report states that the CCUS industry witnessed an increase in storage capacity by 44% over the year. However, the report anticipates that the cost of CCUS today is still difficult to assess. The report accredits this to the varied technologies, and plant design factors. The report assesses the capture costs can lie anywhere between EUR 13 and EUR 103 per ton of carbon dioxide (CO2), depending on the industry and CO2 concentration.

The report highlights that the transport and storage costs can also vary significantly depending on distance, volume, geographical location and storage conditions. The report suggests that the US has filed the most high-value inventions between 2009 and 2020, followed by the EU and Japan. Among the EU Member States, France has the highest number of high-value inventions, followed by Germany and the Netherlands. These trends are also in the EU, in which the top five number of peer-reviewed publications related to various aspects of the CCUS value chain.

Ongoing trend:

2021 was a record high year for public R&D investment in CCUS. At EU level, Denmark is the new leader, attracting 39% of the funds, followed by France (23%) and Germany (21%). Globally, over the last decade, the US has maintained its place as the leader with a 23% share, followed by Canada (18%), Japan (13%), Norway (12%) and the EU (10%). However, in 2021, the EU ranked first (25%), surpassing the US (22%) and Japan (17%).

The US has been the top investor in private R&D since 2012. The EU takes the second spot with a relatively stable level of funding for private R&D. Germany, France, and the Netherlands are the top three countries with the largest private R&D investment in CCUS from 2010 to 2019. The Global venture capital (VC) investment has witnessed more than doubled growth from 2021 to 2022, thereby reaching a new all-time high of EUR 1.5 billion.

The US attracted most VC investment (38%), reinforcing its leading position in the CCUS industry from the very beginning, while the EU managed to secure 18% of global VC investment. Investment in direct air capture (DAC) companies set funding records for 2022. Swiss company Climeworks raised EUR 582 million.


The report expected the DAC to see significant growth, as the first source for captured CO2 in 2050. The report discussed that the CCUS industry is not yet operating at scale and does not have specialised supply chains yet. One of the most mature technologies for capture is the amine solvent-based chemical absorption, which employs monoethanolamine (MEA).

The report segments the element based on industry and finds that the Chromium, mainly sourced from South Africa (56%), is the essential alloying element. Other elements, including nickel, silicon, copper, cobalt, manganese and tungsten, are considered strategic, while aluminium, phosphorus and vanadium are deemed critical for the EU economy according to the 2022 Critical Raw Materials list. Moreover, China is found to be the world’s leading producer of several elements, producing 86% of the total output of tungsten, 79% of phosphorus, 76% of silicon, 62% of vanadium and 56% of aluminium.

On the other hand, the US generated the highest revenue in the CCUS value chain in 2021 at EUR 1.945 billion. The report estimated the value for Europe to be EUR 92 billion. Whereas, Czechia, Ireland, Italy, France and Spain have achieved the highest estimated value added as a percentage of their gross domestic product among EU Member States.

They reportedly have approximately 6 400 people employed in the CCUS chain worldwide, with the majority in the US (4 000 jobs) followed by Australia (400) and Norway (350). The Global CCS Institute estimates that up to 1.4 million jobs could be created globally in the CCUS industry by 2040, with a significant proportion in Europe.

Carbon Capture Hubs:

CCUS hubs will come online early in 2024 to cluster local emitters and pair them with transport and storage developers, in an effort to mitigate risks and reduce costs. In the EU, CCUS hubs will develop in industrial port cities. Some major players such as the Porthos hub in the Port of Rotterdam will capture CO2 from Air Liquide, Shell and ExxonMobil and store it in the North Sea. Other CCUS hubs in Europe include Longship in Norway, Coda Terminal in Iceland, and Acorn and East Coast Cluster in the UK. In the US, most CCUS hubs will emerge along the major onshore pipeline and a few with offshore storage in the Gulf of Mexico. In the US, hubs have been announced by Summit Carbon Solution, Valero and Navigator, Houston hub, CarbonSAFE and Bayou Bend.