From: Roger Greenway, ENN
Published August 25, 2009 01:34 PM

The Key to Safe Subsurface Storage of CO2

Oil exploration and production technology may hold the key to secure CO2 storage, a report published by the CO2 Capture Project (CCP) today highlights. The report provides a definitive treatment of the CO2 storage subsurface technical issues and how oil and gas experience technology and protocols are available now to address them.

Entitled "A Technical Basis for Carbon Dioxide Storage" it provides guidance on how to assess and manage industrial-scale CO2 Geological Storage (CGS) projects through appropriate site assessment, operational parameters and monitoring. The report covers four main areas: site selection; well construction and integrity; monitoring programs; and development, operations and closure.

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Scott Imbus, CCP Storage Team Leader said: "With this report, the oil and gas industry is transferring decades of experience and nine years of technology development to the fledgling industry of CCS. We hope this will provide the critical boost to turn the potential of CCS into a practical reality."

The report draws on the shared expertise of the CCP participants, including research from more than 50 academic institutions, and feedback from leading environmental non-governmental organizations (NGOs). CCP members include BP, Chevron, ConocoPhillips, Eni, Petrobras, Shell, StatoilHydro, Suncor. ”

The work spans several phases:

Phase One of CCP (2000-2004) involved research to identify technologies that have the potential to deliver a significant reduction in the cost of CO2 capture while qualifying and reducing risk associated with CO2 storage. This first phase of research also led to the development of a robust risk- based approach for geological site selection, operation and closure and new CO2 monitoring tools.

Phase 2 (2004-2009) continued the development of the most promising capture and storage technologies for CCS identified in Phase 1. It focused on the advancement of cost-effective, next-generation capture technologies and on ensuring the framework for the CO2 Geological Storage, monitoring and long-term verification tools and processes. It also confirmed that the major cost and barrier to deployment of CCS continues to be the capture process. Of the three major technologies, only post-combustion de-carbonization is commercially available.

Building on CCP Phase 1 and 2 R&D and the collective experience of the eight member companies, the new report details technologies and protocols applied for decades in oil and gas exploration and production and comprises the basis for efficient and secure CO2 storage now. 

The CCP facilitates the sharing of expertise to advance the development of next-generation capture technologies, transport and the development of a certification framework for geological storage.

For more information on the CCP go to: http://www.co2captureproject.org/aboutus.html

A larger image of the graphic illustrating principals of CCP can be found at: http://www.co2captureproject.org/media/3_CCP_infographic.jpg

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