Swedish power company Vattenfall is to abandon research into coal-fired carbon capture and storage, as well as some offshore wind and gas projects.

The move is part of a decision by Vattenfall to reassess its research priorities and only put money into those projects which can “further strengthen the development of the business over the coming years”.

Karl Bergman, head of the company’s Nordic R&D, said today: “Tough market conditions are expected to continue for another few years, and we are restructuring our research and development operations as it is becoming increasingly important to have the right knowledge at the right time to meet the ever-changing needs of business.”

Vattenfall’s decision to refocus its R&D plans will affect around 40 staff and some redundancies are expected. While this will cut costs, Bergmen stressed “that’s not what it’s mainly about, as having funds available gives us scope to pursue new projects”.

“We are evaluating our research portfolio in order to invest in R&D projects which can contribute more quickly to our business development in the coming years, and for some time afterwards.”

Vattenfall will turn its R&D focus on smart grid, wind (mainly onshore), hydro, coal and nuclear projects.

Bergman added: “We now need to prioritise our R&D investments and choose whatever is most needed. We are opting for efficient research projects that can contribute further to our business operations, now and in the future.”