Castor Project Gas off-shore storage in Vinaròs, Spain


The Castor Project is a submarine natural gas storage facility in the east coast of Spain, in the municipality of Vinarós, able to contain 1,3 Billion cubic meters of gas. The plant facilities take the gas from the general gas grid for storage in the submarine underground. To do so, the gas is transferred via a gas pipeline approximately 30 km long, mostly running under the sea, which connects the Ignacio Pérez land plant to the offshore platform located 22 km offshore.

See more...
Basic Data
NameCastor Project Gas off-shore storage in Vinaròs, Spain
Accuracy of LocationMEDIUM regional level
Source of Conflict
Type of Conflict (1st level)Industrial and Utilities conflicts
Type of Conflict (2nd level)Other
Specific Commodities
Natural Gas
Project Details and Actors
Project DetailsThe Castor UGS project utilised the depleted Amposta oil reservoir. This offshore geological structure is 5 kilometres long, 2.5 kilometres wide and up to 250 metres thick, providing an estimated total of 1.9 billion cubic metres (67 billion cubic feet) of storage capacity. The underground reservoir’s size and porosity provided estimated storage volume equivalent to 14 liquefied natural gas (LNG) transportation tankers.

Castor’s forecast delivery rated of 25 million cubic metres (883 million cubic feet) per day. It was thought it would contribute strategic storage and reliability of supply to industrial and domestic customers, and would compensate for a potential future supply shortfall equal to the capacity of the Maghreb pipeline or one regasification plant for over 50 days. Castor’s anticipated working gas storage capacity of 1.3 billion cubic metres (45.9 billion cubic feet) would provide a sizeable reserve for seasonal and peak demands.
Level of Investment (in USD)2,700,000,000
Type of PopulationSemi-urban
Potential Affected Population400000
Start Date2007
Company Names or State EnterprisesCastor Limited Partnership from Canada
Dundee Energy Limited from Canada
Grupo ACS (ACS) from Spain
Relevant government actorsMinistry of Industry, Vinarós Town council, Amposta Town Council, Benicàssim Town Council, European Comission
Environmental justice organisations and other supportersPlataforma en Defensa de les Terres del Sénia, Ecologistas en acción
The Conflict and the Mobilization
Intensity of Conflict (at highest level)MEDIUM (street protests, visible mobilization)
When did the mobilization beginPREVENTIVE resistance (precautionary phase)
Groups MobilizingLocal government/political parties
Forms of MobilizationLawsuits, court cases, judicial activism
Objections to the EIA
Public campaigns
Street protest/marches
Environmental ImpactsPotential: Large-scale disturbance of hydro and geological systems
Othersysmic activity
Health ImpactsPotential: Exposure to unknown or uncertain complex risks (radiation, etc…)
Socio-economic ImpactsPotential: Increase in Corruption/Co-optation of different actors, Displacement, Loss of livelihood
Project StatusStopped
Pathways for conflict outcome / responseNew Environmental Impact Assessment/Study
Halt completely the project
Do you consider this as a success?No
Why? Explain briefly.The halt of the Castor project was due to the high sysmic activity that was registered in the area. Although since then, the opposition has intensified to demand a final stop of the activity.
Sources and Materials

Resolución de 4 de marzo de 2011, de la Dirección General de Política Energética y Minas, por la que se otorga a Enagás, Sociedad Anónima, autorización administrativa, aprobación del proyecto de ejecución y reconocimiento, en concreto, de utilidad pública
[click to view]

Ley 12/2007, de 2 de julio, por la que se modifica la Ley 34/1998, de 7 de octubre, del Sector de Hidrocarburos, con el fin de adaptarla a lo dispuesto en la Directiva 2003/55/CE del Parlamento Europeo y del Consejo, de 26 de junio de 2003, sobre normas c
[click to view]

Ley 30/1992, de 26 de noviembre, de Régimen Jurídico de las Administraciones Públicas y del Procedimiento Administrativo Común, modificada por la Ley 4/1999, de 13 de enero; la Ley 13/2003, de 23 de mayo, reguladora del contrato de concesión de obras públ
[click to view]

el Real Decreto 949/2001, de 3 de agosto, por el que se regula el acceso de terceros a las instalaciones gasistas y se establece un sistema económico integrado en el sector del gas natural:
[click to view]

Orden del Ministerio de Industria de 18 de noviembre de 1974, por la que se aprueba el Reglamento de Redes y Acometidas de Combustibles Gaseosos, modificada por Órdenes del Ministerio de Industria y Energía de 26 de octubre de 1983, de 6 de julio de 1984, 9 de marzo de 1994 y de 29 de mayo de 1998.

Real Decreto 1434/2002, de 27 de diciembre, por el que se regulan las actividades de transporte, distribución, comercialización, suministro y procedimientos de autorización de instalaciones de gas natural:
[click to view]


Mini-video of one protest: Human chain aganist the Castor project:
[click to view]

Video documentary: Informe semanal projecto Castor (Spanish public TV 12-10-2013):
[click to view]

TV news. Demo against the Castor project 2007:
[click to view]


newspaper article: El Gobierno validó Castor en 2007:
[click to view]

newspaper article: Ecologistas en Acción denuncia el peligro por el escape de gas en Castor:
[click to view]

Web plataforma en defensa de les terres del Sènia with lots of information:
[click to view]

newspaper article: Un millar de personas exige el cierre definitivo de Castor en Vinaròs:
[click to view]

Meta Information
ContributorAmaranta Herrero
Last update03/05/2014