Growing up in Teesside, Richard Truman shares how his work is bringing more clean energy and rejuvenating his hometown
I can still remember the moment that kickstarted my passion for science and problem-solving. In primary school we did an experiment where a block of ice was wrapped in a scarf and placed next to an uncovered block. As the uncovered block began to melt and eventually disappeared first, I couldn’t understand how something that kept me warm, kept the block of ice cold. I didn’t realise at the time but this was my introduction to the Greenhouse effect.
Fast forward to 2021 and what initially sparked my interest is now the focus of my career. My job is to deliver on sustainability, through planning injection wells for CO2 capture in the ground-breaking Carbon Capture, Utilisation and Storage (CCUS) project - Net Zero Teesside (NZT).
Part of a wider cluster of bp projects working to decarbonize a range of businesses across Teesside – including the bp operated Northern Endurance Partnership (NEP) and H2 Teesside (The UK’s largest blue hydrogen production facility). Collectively, these projects plan to:
Contributing to bp’s wider net zero ambition and aim 11.
I grew up in the Teesside area. A region with a rich and successful history, but also one hit hard by years of industrial decline. I love being part of a project that is delivering quality jobs and supporting the livelihoods of local communities. What’s even more encouraging is that Net Zero Teesside is jump-starting the sleeping industrial giant that is Teesside. By working alongside carbon pricing, CCUS capability will greatly reduce emissions and attract other businesses to invest in the area – such as bp’s H2 Teesside Blue Hydrogen production facility and GE’s wind turbine blade manufacturing plant.
Carbon Capture and Storage is an essential tool in achieving the Paris Agreement goals, helping to tackle emissions in hard to decarbonise industries (such as manufacturing and chemical production). The UK Committee on Climate Change (CCC) estimates that in the UK alone, 75-175 million tonnes of CO₂ will need to be captured and stored per year to achieve the goal of Net Zero emissions by 2050. The Net Zero Teesside project is helping to deliver this by storing 10 million tonnes per annum in phase 1, with aspirations to double this through future expansion.
In a nutshell, the Net Zero Teesside project will build a new power station, which is designed to only be switched on when output from renewable sources isn’t enough to meet demand, then capture the waste CO2 emitted when it is. This will be combined with CO2 from other industrial sites, transported and securely stored (sequestered) in sandstone formations under the North Sea.
I’m a small cog in a big machine, with the responsibility for planning the injection wells that will safely store the CO2 underground. I have adapted skills learned through a career drilling for hydrocarbons and now use them to provide more clean energy.
I’m humbled to have the opportunity to be part of the excellent bp team that’s making such a positive impact on the place I call home. I look forward to sharing my knowledge and helping more communities by delivering CCUS projects and other low carbon solutions.
bp’s economics team produces two reports annually. One – the Energy Outlook – is forward-looking and the other – the Statistical Review of World Energy – analyses data from the previous year
Our purpose is reimagining energy for people and our planet. We want to help the world reach net zero and improve people’s lives