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European Union

Geological storage of carbon dioxide (Directive 2009/31/EC on the geological storage of carbon dioxide and amending Council Directive 85/337/EEC, European Parliament and Council Directives 2000/60/EC, 2001/80/EC, 2004/35/EC, 2006/12/EC, 2008/1/EC and Regulation (EC) No 1013/2006)

legislation type Legislative
Eu Directive
Passed in 2009
The Directive establishes a legal framework for the environmentally safe geological storage of CO2. It covers all CO2 storage in geological formations in the EU, and lays down requirements covering the entire lifetime of a storage site. It implements a permit regime for exploration and storage, and selection criteria for storage sites. 

The Directive defines the relationship between carbon, capture and storage (CCS) and the EU ETS in terms of finance and also rules that CO2 captured and stored will be considered as 'not emitted'. There are monitoring and reporting obligations, inspections, measures in case of irregularities and/or leakage and provision of financial security. Site selection is the crucial stage for ensuring the integrity of a project and the Directive lays down extensive requirements. A site can only be selected for use if a prior analysis shows that, under the proposed conditions of use, there is no significant risk of leakage or damage to human health or the environment. The operation of the site must be closely monitored and corrective measures taken in the case that leakage does occur. 

In addition, the Directive contains provisions on closure and post-closure obligations, and sets out criteria for the transfer of responsibility from the operator to the Member State.

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    On October 6th 2021, Client Earth and Ecologistas en Acción filed a complaint to the European Commission over pollution in the Mar Menor Lagoon, located in the Region of Murcia, as a result of the increased socio-economic use of the area with a convergent increase of activities that include agric...

from the Grantham Research Institute
from the Grantham Research Institute
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