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The Carbon Corner - Issue #86

Published about 1 month ago • 4 min read

In this week's focus on carbon capture and sequestration technologies, we explore groundbreaking developments that are setting new benchmarks in the fight against climate change.

Join us as we delve into the stories that are shaping the future of carbon capture!

Capturing the Future: Worley Leads Groundbreaking Carbon Capture Initiative in Texas

Worley, an Australian sustainability solutions company, has recently secured a significant contract to spearhead the development and evaluation of carbon dioxide capture, transportation, and storage systems for the Bayou Bend CCS project in Texas. This initiative is a collaborative effort with industry giants Chevron, Equinor, and TotalEnergies and aims to mitigate industrial CO2 emissions in southeast Texas by utilizing a vast 140,000-acre underground reservoir near the Gulf of Mexico coast. The project not only covers an extensive area that includes leases for about 40,000 acres in Gulf waters but also acquires 100,000 acres from private landowners in strategic locations such as Jefferson and Chambers counties.

Mark Trueman, President of Worley for the Americas, expressed confidence in leveraging the company's global expertise in CCS to ensure the success of Bayou Bend. He highlighted Worley's commitment to accelerating the adoption of carbon capture solutions, aiming to significantly reduce the environmental footprint of industrial activities in the region. The project promises substantial environmental impacts, with TotalEnergies projecting the capacity to sequester "several hundred million" tonnes of CO2, positioning Bayou Bend as a cornerstone in the pursuit of net zero ambitions for these companies.

Accelerating Decarbonization: Biden Administration Boosts CCS with New Policies and Funding

The Biden administration is significantly ramping up its efforts in carbon capture and storage (CCS) as part of its broader strategy to accelerate the United States' decarbonization. Highlighting this commitment, the Environmental Protection Agency has implemented new regulations mandating that fossil fuel power plants either install CCS technology or cease operations by 2039. Additionally, the Department of Energy (DOE) has rolled out substantial funding initiatives for industrial decarbonization, demonstrating a robust government approach to subsidizing CCS advancements.

Further bolstering these efforts, the IRS, alongside the Department of Treasury and DOE, recently unveiled further details about the Qualifying Advanced Energy Project Credit Program (48C), which allocates nearly $6 billion to promote energy-efficient projects. In the first round of funding in 2023, $4 billion in tax credits were distributed across over 100 projects in 35 states, with $500 million specifically earmarked for industrial decarbonization projects, encompassing a diverse range of industries from cement to food and beverage. The 48C tax credit aims to incentivize facilities that reduce emissions by at least 20%, offering substantial financial support to expedite the adoption of CCS and other green technologies. This strategic financial backing underscores a pivotal shift towards cleaner industrial processes, ensuring significant environmental impact while fostering economic growth in green technology sectors.

Alaska Advances Innovative Energy Legislation to Boost Gas Production and Carbon Capture

Alaska is poised to make significant strides in energy policy with the advancement of two high-priority bills focused on enhancing gas production in Cook Inlet, introducing carbon capture initiatives, and reducing energy costs. Proposed by Governor Mike Dunleavy, these bills have now expanded to include various innovative proposals. In the House, a bill that facilitates cheaper and more efficient power transmission across the Railbelt has received approval, promising lower energy costs and easier grid access for independent producers. This bill, preventing utilities from charging customers for the construction of natural gas import terminals, is expected to pass final Senate scrutiny soon.

On the Senate side, legislation that enables the sequestration of carbon dioxide into underground reservoirs has been passed, marking a pivotal move towards involving Alaska in the burgeoning carbon capture and storage industry. This initiative, which could also enhance oil recovery and increase state revenue, includes mechanisms like regulated gas storage pricing and state loans to support small gas drillers in Cook Inlet. Furthermore, the Senate has endorsed a green bank within the Alaska Housing Finance Corporation to fund renewable energy projects, reflecting a comprehensive approach to address the state's energy challenges and promote sustainable practices.

Groundbreaking Partnership: CapturePoint and Energy Transfer Set to Revolutionize Carbon Capture in Louisiana

CapturePoint LLC and Energy Transfer LP are launching a transformative venture to capture carbon dioxide emissions from Energy Transfer’s gas facilities in Louisiana, directing them to CapturePoint's Central Louisiana Regional Carbon Storage Hub (CENLA Hub). This collaboration marks a significant stride in carbon management, with plans to inject CO2 into underground reservoirs at the CENLA Hub, which is recognized as one of the nation's most promising storage sites. This initiative aligns with global carbon reduction goals, aiming to significantly bolster the capacity for carbon capture, necessary to combat climate change effectively.

The CENLA Hub, with a potential to sequester up to two million tons of CO2 annually, could have a total capacity reaching hundreds of millions of tons. This capacity highlights its critical role in national efforts to mitigate greenhouse gas emissions. The financial viability of such projects is supported by studies showing natural gas processing as one of the most cost-effective applications of CCS technology, with costs further mitigated by federal tax credits. As both companies prepare to potentially co-own and operate the hub, this venture not only represents a commitment to advancing CCS technology but also stands as a model for future collaborations aiming to achieve significant environmental impacts.

ORNL Unveils Innovative Battery Tech Combining Renewable Energy Storage with CO2 Capture

Researchers at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) are pioneering new battery technologies that not only store renewable energy more efficiently but also capture airborne carbon dioxide, transforming it into solid, usable products. These breakthroughs are part of the Transformation Energy Science and Technology (TEST) initiative, which focuses on moving beyond traditional lithium-ion systems to tackle climate change more effectively. ORNL's novel battery formulations can convert CO2 gas into a solid form during the electrochemical reaction used for energy storage, presenting a dual solution to energy sustainability and environmental restoration.

One of the innovative battery types developed by ORNL has shown remarkable endurance, maintaining capacity through 600 hours of operation and potentially storing up to 10 hours of electricity. This technology uses abundant materials like sodium and aluminum in conjunction with a saltwater-based electrolyte, which enhances safety and environmental friendliness by stabilizing electrodes in water. Importantly, these batteries do not release CO2; instead, they produce beneficial byproducts that can be utilized in industries like pharmaceuticals and cement, contributing further to their commercial viability.

Schaper Energy Consulting is a professional engineering firm offering carbon strategy services to CCS site developers. Check out some examples of our projects here: https://schaperintl.com/carbon-strategies/

If you have questions or comments, please contact us at info@schaperintl.com.

We hope you enjoyed reading this week and hope to see you back next week for more!

Schaper Energy Consulting

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