CCU Landscaping

Research:  2015-2017

Carbon Capture and Usage (CCU) offers survival chances in the energy transition. In the new markets that CCU brings with it, Rotterdam can lead the way.


The excessive amounts of CO2 available in the port of Rotterdam area were the precursor to an exploration into the possibilities of Carbon Capture and Usage (CCU). CO2 reuse is likely to be economically attractive and climate benefits can be realized.

The CCU Landscaping research focuses on the question of what the possibilities are for reusing CO2  in the port and industrial complex and what the impact of the deployment of CCU would be.

CCU initiatives and activities have been inventoried worldwide and the extent to which they have been commercially successful has been assessed. Subsequently, specifically in Rotterdam, potentially interesting applications of CO2 reuse were further explored. The following four applications are promising:

  1. Building materials / cement
    2. Chemical intermediates, such as syngas
    3. Fuels with short-cycle carbon
    4. PolymersIn many applications, a lot of work still needs to be done before the deployment of CCU can be profitable. In a few cases though, CCU already offers possibilities in the short term. For instance, there are opportunities in cement production and so-called non-conversion activities, in which the CO2 as such is embedded or used. A tangible example of a non-conversion activity is the introduction of CO2 in the greenhouses in the Westland area near the port industrial complex.

The realization of CCU requires targeted policy, the construction of the required infrastructure and the setting up of a market for the trading of CO2.


  • CO2-emission reduction.
  • Incentive for the circular economy. Residual substances, in this case CO2, remain in the production chain.
  • More specifically: incentive for circular chemistry.
  • Contribution to the electrification of the processes in the port and industrial complex.

Business opportunities

  • Using the economies of scale that Rotterdam offers.
  • The fuel cluster has a possibility to become cleaner with CCU. In the energy transitions this offers the cluster better chances of survival or a longer lifespan.
  • CCU is about creating new markets, in which ‘Rotterdam’ can lead the way and can gain a stronger position compared to other chemical clusters.


Port Authority Rotterdam, Clean Tech Delta, Lux Research

This project is part of the Smart Energy & Industry roadmap. For more information about this project or this roadmap, please contact project developer Mel Valies.