The Dutch government has its eyes set on achieving net zero emissions by mid-century, and it is promoting carbon capture and storage projects along with renewable energy projects to ensure a sustainable future. The emphasis is on the government’s ambition and strategy, prominent projects, leading operators in the sector, and the obstacles impeding progress towards a sustainable future.

Ambition & Strategy:

The Netherlands announced in 2021 that it intends to reach a 55 per cent reduction in greenhouse gases by 2030 compared to 1990 levels, 70 per cent by 2035, 80 per cent in 2040 and to reach net zero status by 2050. The government seeks to enhance renewable energy and reduce emissions through carbon capture and storage projects.

The government has provided subsidies through the SDE++ scheme for renewable energy and carbon reduction programs. Under this, they offered €5 billion in grant money through the SDE++ scheme in 2020, €5 billion in 2021, €13 billion in 2022, and €12 billion in 2023. The government signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Denmark to cooperate on carbon capture and storage projects on the sidelines of the EU Environment Council meeting in October 2023.

Key Projects:

  • Porthos carbon capture and storage project is in South Holland, developed by a joint venture between Energie Beheer Nederland, Gasunie, and the Port of Rotterdam Authority. It will capture carbon from refineries and chemical and hydrogen plants in the Port of Rotterdam. This project is currently under construction and slated for operational status in 2026, boasting a storage capacity of 2.5 million tonnes with an investment of €500 million.
  • L10 carbon capture and storage project developed by Neptune Energy, Energie Beheer Nederland, Tenaz Energy and ExxonMobil. To be operational in 2028 with a storage capacity of 5 million tonnes annually.

Top Operators:

  • CarbonOro, headquartered in Nijmegen, was founded in 2013. They aim to reduce the cost of reducing carbon from gasses with the use of waste heat and an efficient energy process.
  • CoreKees, headquartered in Amsterdam, was founded in 2016. They are an investment platform helping investors reduce carbon emissions and attain financial returns through participation in sustainable programs such as Pongamia Tree.
  • CarbonLeap BV, headquartered in Amstelvee, was founded in 2020. They attain carbon footprint reduction through supply chain interventions, enabling companies to reduce their emissions.
  • ANTECY, headquartered in Nijikerk and founded in 2010. They capture carbon from the air, used to produce fuel and chemicals and in the food and packaging industry.


  • The first obstacle is the bleak social acceptance of such projects. For example, the government cancelled the carbon capture project in residential areas of Barendrecht due to social resistance.
  • The second issue is that the economics of carbon capture projects is challenging without government incentives and carbon pricing mechanisms. The government needs a regulatory framework to scale up the sector.
  • The third obstacle lies in the undeveloped infrastructure required for the project, presenting challenges in capturing, transporting, and storing the carbon extracted from the air.


The Dutch government’s pursuit of net-zero emissions by mid-century relies on a dual approach of boosting renewable energy and advancing carbon capture and storage (CCS) projects. Key initiatives like the Porthos and L10 CCS projects, substantial investments and international partnerships signal progress towards this goal. Innovative operators such as CarbonOro and CoreKees further enrich the landscape. Yet, challenges persist, including social resistance, economic viability concerns, and infrastructure gaps. Overcoming these hurdles demands concerted efforts from all stakeholders. Despite obstacles, the commitment to sustainability and collaborative endeavours offer optimism for a cleaner, greener future.

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