The Hatfield power plant in Yorkshire is favourite to become the UK based carbon capture and storage project to win EU funding, after the European Commission named the site on its shortlist of preferred projects. The project, proposed by Powerfuel, is set to receive €180m in funding, from a fund set aside by the EU in January to provide a fiscal stimulus to member states’ economies in the wake of the recession. Rival bidders Scottish Power has insisted that it is still in the running. “Nothing has been formally announced yet,” said a spokesman for the company.

If finalised, the award will mean that the Longannet plant in Fife proposed by Scottish Power, and a site at Tilbury in Essex operated by npower will have missed out on the EU funding. (E.On’s Kingsnorth project had been in the running but has now been delayed indefinitely.) Nonetheless the two projects remain in the running for the UK government’s £1bn competition to fund a post-combustion CCS plant.

Powerfuel’s proposal was the only UK site that plans to demonstrate Integrated Gasification Combined Cycle CCS technology, in which the carbon dioxide is removed before the coal is burned. There were only three such pre-combustion plants being proposed among the 11 plants that applied for the EU funding, with Powerfuel the only successful bidder, according to a report by Reuters, the agency that first released the story.

•In md-October the European Commission published a report estimating that the public and private sector must invest €13bn in CCS over the next 10 years to bring the technology to market. The report came at the same time as a study from the International Energy Agency which estimated that the world needs to build 100 major CCS projects by 2020 and 850 plants by 2030 if carbon emissions are to be stabilised.

The CCS Institute suggests there are 273 CCS projects under way worldwide, but only 64 are on a commercial scale. Of these, only seven are in full operation at present.