It is generally accepted that anthropogenic emissions of greenhouse gases are causing changes in the climate. The major contributor is carbon dioxide (CO2 ), which arises mainly from use of fossil fuels.
Measures, such as improved energy efficiency and use of alternative energy sources, will help reduce emissions.
However, recognising that about 85% of the world's commercial energy needs are met by fossil fuels, a rapid move away from oil, natural gas and coal is unlikely to be achievable without serious disruption to the global economy. Today it is starting to be recognised that emissions of CO2 from fossil fuel combustion could be much reduced by its capture and safe storage in geological formations.
The first decision to apply underground storage of carbon dioxide ( CO2 ) captured from natural gas as a climate change mitigation effort - was taken by Statoil (operator) and partners in the Sleipner North Sea licence in 1990. The second such decision was taken by Statoil (operator) and partners in the Snhvit licence in the Barents Sea in the fall of 2001.
The largest point source in Norway is emitting about 1,5 million tonnes pr year. Thus building the CO2 value chain: Capture, transport, storage, stewardship, and the temporel dimension of the CCS operational life-cycle ( planning, construction, operation and decommissioning)is important in capture and storage of CO2
Since 1996 1 million tons per year of CO2 has been separated from the natural gas and stored in a saline aquifer (the Utsira formation) at the Sleipner field.
The main aim of the project conducted by imperial college London and supervised by Dr Tara LaForce is to develop an understanding of how CO2 migration occurs at the small scale in order to use this knowledge to design CO2 projects, which will not allow the CO2 to escape after injection. This study will focus on the small-scale physics that determine the ability of CO2 to migrate upwards or laterally after injection.
According to a paper published by the Energy Research Centre of Netherlands and authored by Bob van der Zwann and Reyer Gerlagh, the economics of CO2 capture and storage in relation to the posiibility of significant leakage of CO2 from geological reservoirs one this greenhouse has has been stored artificially underground will be among the main determinants of wether capture and storage can significantly contribute to a deep cut in global CO2 emissions
Source: STATOIL, SONATRACH, Imperial College, Energy Research Centre of the Netherlands (ECN) and University of Manchester.