Stoltenberg defends failed CO2 scheme
Norway's former Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg has defended his decision to plough 1.9 billion kroner into the failed Mongstad carbon capture project, arguing that "in the battle against climate change, you must take many chances".
When Stoltenberg launched the project in 2007, he described it as Norway's "moon landing", such was the technical feat involved.
But the project was scrapped last year after the projected cost soared from 5 billion kroner ($800m) to 20 billion kroner ($3.2bn).
Stoltenberg was called to defend the decision to launch the project in front of a parliamentary committee on Monday.
"We stopped the project before we started spending a lot of money," Mr. Stoltenberg told the Wall Street Journal in an interview after the hearing. "I don't agree that it's wrong to test and develop technologies even if some of the technologies don't work."
"In the battle against climate change, you must take many chances…or else you won't succeed," he added.
The project, which paid for by Norway's government but operated by the national oil company Statoil.
The aim was to capture up to one million tons of CO2 from a neighbouring gas-fired power station and pump it into an underground reservoir for storage.
The plant had been scheduled to begin operations in 2012, but the start date was postponed to 2016.