CO2 Injection  

Posted by Big Gav

Rigzone has a little article up on Norway's flirtation with using CO2 to enhance offshore oil production - apparently its not worth the effort.

The Norwegian Petroleum Directorate (NPD) has, on assignment from the Ministry of Petroleum and Energy (MPE), conducted a feasibility study of projects entailing CO2 injection for increased oil recovery on the Norwegian continental shelf. The conclusion is that, at the present time, CO2 injection does not appear to be a commercial alternative for improved oil recovery for the licensees on the Norwegian shelf.

Update: The link seems to have disappeared, but it is still in Google cache.

Update: Even Google cache has been cleansed - but the original Norwegian source still exists (at the moment anyway - though it may mysteriously disappear as well one day I guess) (pdf).
Access to large volumes of CO2 is needed if we are to implement use of CO2 for improved oil recovery on the Norwegian continental shelf. To reduce capture and transport costs, the CO2 sources should be large point emissions situated as close to the fields as possible.

Many studies have been conducted with the aim of identifying CO2 sources in Norway and in Northern Europe. Only a few sources in Norway are large enough to supply fields on the Norwegian shelf with CO2. Planned new gas power plants may make interesting volumes available near the relevant fields.

There are major point emissions of CO2 in Europe, e.g. the coal power plants in Denmark, which could supply the fields on the Norwegian shelf with CO2. Large-scale import of CO2 will be a precondition for extracting the entire potential of improved recovery through CO2 injection on the Norwegian shelf.

The technology required for capture of CO2 from gas power plants is available, but has not been demonstrated for large gas power plants. Potential cost savings have been identified, but these will probably not be available for another five-six years. Research, development of technology and demonstration projects may, in the long term, contribute to reduced capture costs.

CO2 can be transported in pipelines or by ship. Given today's technology, pipelines to the fields are required, either directly from the source or from an interim storage. Transport by ship is needed if CO2 is to be transported from small or scattered sources far from established CO2 storage facilities. Delivery of CO2 from ships directly to an oil field may be a long-term alternative, if new technology is qualified and field-specific conditions so permit.

Fields with CO2 injection only require CO2 for a limited period of time - as long as the field uses CO2 for increased recovery. In addition, both planned and unplanned operational shutdowns will occur on the field. In order to avoid large emissions of CO2 during periods when the field cannot use CO2 for improved recovery, the infrastructure, capture and transport should be linked to a long-term storage alternative so that delivered CO2 can be accepted continuously throughout the lifetime of the gas power plant/source. This increases the threshold costs for the first field that may elect to use CO2 for this purpose.

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