Carbon Capture and Storage Carbon Capture and Storage

 What is CCS?

Carbon capture and storage (CCS) stands for the capture and compression of the CO2 emitted in a fossil fuel power plant and its transport to a storage location creating a geological formation onshore or offshore.

Technology scheme [SETIS 2014]

Storage options include amongst others deep saline aquifers, deep coal bed methane (enhanced), combined or used in Enhanced Oil recovery (EOR), in depleted oil/gas reservoirs. Most recently two pilot projects are under development in basaltic areas, one in the USA and other in Iceland supported by the EU [CORDIS 2011]. The major CCS possibilities are (i) post-combustion CO2 capture at supercritical pulverised coal (SCPC) and natural gas combined cycle (NGCC) power plants, (ii) pre-combustion CO2 capture at coal-based integrated gasification combined cycle (IGCC) power plants and (iii) oxy-combustion at supercritical or ultrasupercritical (USC) coal power plants. The mentioned options refer to new power plants; however, important applications are retrofits of CCS to existing power plants and to industrial (cement, iron and steel, paper, refineries) plants. The biomass-based CCS, with only biomass or co-used with coal and natural gas, has the theoretical potential for negative CO2 emissions [SETIS 2014], [Gale et al. 2015]. In addition to biomass, CCS could be combined with geothermal energy to reduce costs and increase efficiency.
 

Beyond different alternatives, CCS is fundamental to achieve low carbon energy goals. According to several studies carried out both in Europe and USA, 13 % of CO2 emissions can be avoided by means of this technology. [IEA 2015], [NETL 2015].

Further information on CCS technology can be found at the Strategic Energy Technologies Information System (SETIS).

References

[SETIS 2014] SETIS: Carbon Capture Use and Storage. Available at: http://decarboni.se/publications/carbon-capture-use-and-storage-legal-resource-net

[CORDIS 2011] CORDIS: Carbfix. “Creating the technology for safe, long-term carbon storage in the subsurface.” URL: http://cordis.europa.eu/project/rcn/100456_en.html

[Gale et al. 2015] Gale J, Abanades JC, Bachu S, and Jenkins C: Special Issue commemorating the 10th year anniversary of the publication of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change Special Report on CO2 Capture and Storage. International Journal of Greenhouse Gas Control 40 (1–5). DOI:10.1016/j.ijggc.2015.06.019

[IEA 2015] IEA: IEA Greenhouse Gas R&D Programme. URL: http://www.ieaghg.org/

[NETL 2015] NETL: NETL’S CARBON AND STORAGE DATABASE - VERSION 5. URL: http://www.netl.doe.gov/research/coal/carbon-storage/strategic-program-support/database

 

What are the barriers and needs of CCS?

Barriers and needs of CCS are political, economic, technical/infrastructural and social

Table 1. Challenges & needs faced by European countries.[Gale et al. 2015], [Rubin et al. 2015], [Dixon et al. 2015] and [Ashworth et al. 2015]

Nature of barriers

Barriers

Needs

Political

 

Lack of consistent and robust climate policy and the consequent call for large amounts of GHG reductions to stabilise climate change.

A robust regulation framework needs to be addressed. To become feasible, financial incentives are crucial. In the long term a stable carbon pricing mechanism (or carbon market) is needed to enable global commercial CCS deployment.

Lack of political commitment to CCS by some Member States, exacerbated by problems with permission procedures

Economic

 

High investment and operational costs and therefore lack of competitiveness compared to other low-carbon technologies.

Achieving significant cost reductions will require a sustained amount of R&D projects and an important level of commercial deployment. A robust financing framework needs to be addressed.

In addition, financial instruments have to take into account CO2 monitoring costs for long periods (during and after the injection process) having an important effect in the operational costs.

There is often no financial compensation for the additional capital and operational costs associated with CCS

Technical / Infrastructural

Lack of CO2 infrastructure (transport and storage) development. A market for CO2 capture technologies is not fully developed.

 

The CO2 infrastructure (transport and storage), as well as the whole CO2 capture and storage supply chain, has to be developed to ensure the disposal of the CO2 and risk management for possible CCS investors.

Assessment and identification of suitable storage sites.

Projects do not reach the final levels of implementation.

The projects that are currently under development must be completed in order to contribute to the acquisition of knowledge and to the posterior formation of the CCS infrastructure.

Social

CCS still remains unknown for the overall public.

Campaigns about pros/cons and training are required to increase overall understanding. These campaigns have to bring together researchers, technical staff as well as politicians.

Environmental risks concerning health, water pollution are perceived by public opinion.

 

References

[Gale et al. 2015] Gale J, Abanades JC, Bachu S, and Jenkins C: Special Issue commemorating the 10th year anniversary of the publication of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change Special Report on CO2 Capture and Storage. International Journal of Greenhouse Gas Control 40 (1–5). DOI:10.1016/j.ijggc.2015.06.019

[Rubin et al. 2015] Rubin ES, Davison JE, and Herzog HJ: The cost of CO2 capture and storage. International Journal of Greenhouse Gas Control 40 (378–400). DOI:10.1016/j.ijggc.2015.05.018

[Dixon et al. 2015] Dixon T, McCoy ST, and Havercroft I: Legal and Regulatory Developments on CCS. International Journal of Greenhouse Gas Control 40 (431–448). DOI:10.1016/j.ijggc.2015.05.024

[Ashworth et al. 2015] Ashworth P, Wade S, Reiner D, and Liang X: Developments in public communications on CCS. International Journal of Greenhouse Gas Control 40 (449–458). DOI:10.1016/j.ijggc.2015.06.002

 

What are industry and the EU doing about CCS?

According to [Eurostat 2013], fossil fuel power plants are still the backbone of the European electricity generation, providing 50 % of the net electricity generation in EU-28, in 2013. According to [GCCSI], there exist 45 CCS large-scale projects worldwide at different stages (operational, in execution, defined or under evaluation), 8 of them located in Europe (in UK, Norway and The Netherlands). There are 5 placed in power generation plants and 2 in natural gas processing plants. These 2, sited in Norway, are operating. The rest of the European projects are under definition or evaluation (Table 2).

 

Table 2. Summary of the current CCS projects in Europe [GCCSI]

Project

Location

Project Lifecycle Stage

Operation Date

Industry

Capture Type

Capture Capacity (Mtpa)

Transport Type

Primary Storage Type

Rotterdam Opslag en Afvang Demonstratieproject (ROAD)

Netherlands

Define

2019-20

Power Generation

Post-combustion capture

1.1

Pipeline

Dedicated Geological Storage

Sleipner CO2 Storage Project

Norway

Operate

1996

Natural Gas Processing

Pre-combustion capture (natural gas processing)

0.9

No transport required (direct injection)

Dedicated Geological Storage

Snøhvit CO2 Storage Project

Norway

Operate

2008

Natural Gas Processing

Pre-combustion capture (natural gas processing)

0.7

Pipeline

Dedicated Geological Storage

Caledonia Clean Energy Project

United Kingdom

Evaluate

2022

Power Generation

Pre-combustion capture (gasification)

3.8

Pipeline

Dedicated Geological Storage

Don Valley Power Project

United Kingdom

Define

2020

Power Generation

Pre-combustion capture (gasification)

1.5

Pipeline

Dedicated Geological Storage

Peterhead CCS Project

United Kingdom

Define

2019-20

Power Generation

Post-combustion capture

1.0

Pipeline

Dedicated Geological Storage

Teesside Collective Project

United Kingdom

Evaluate

Post 2020

Various

Various

2.8

Pipeline

Dedicated Geological Storage

White Rose CCS Project

United Kingdom

Define

2020-21

Power Generation

Oxy-fuel combustion capture

2.0

Pipeline

Dedicated Geological Storage

 

Worldwide, there are 15 operating demonstration projects, using EOR as final CO2 disposal except for the Norwegian plants, which use dedicated geological storage.

In addition, 7 new CCS projects should start in 2016-2017 and other 11 are in advanced planning for the next future. [GCCSI 2015]

Despite the successfully installed projects, CCS has not been progressing as far as their climate change mitigation capacity would warrant. EUR 1 billion was allocated (between 2009 and 2010) to six projects in six different Member States (MS), through the European Energy Programme for recovery (EEPR) [SETIS 2014]. According to the [EC 2013], by October 2013, 3 of the 6 projects were already terminated, but not accomplished, due to permitting, legislation and financing issues. As considered in Table 2, only ROAD (Netherlands) and Don Valley (UK), 2 of the 6 selected projects, are on-going. In the EEPR scheme, public and private undertakings are acting as project promoters. The maximum funding rate of the EU was limited to 80%.

The White Rose CCS Project in UK, is the one awarded through the NER300 programme [SETIS 2014]. It is part of a new coal fired power plant with oxy-fuel combustion, from which captured CO2 is planned to be piped for storage under the North Sea. For period 2007-2013, the total commitment to CCS technologies was around EUR 245 million, distributed along different FP7 stakeholders (Figure 1). The overall spectrum of projects includes CO2 capture, transport and storage. One of the main lines of support is FP7-Energy (with a value of EUR 56 million). As it can be assessed from Figure 1, half of the FP7 participant contribution comes from the private sector and the other half from public including education, research and public bodies.

Figure 1. Contribution share in the FP7 programme per type of organisation [Corsatea, T et al. 2015]

The relative contribution of national funding and corporate funding for CCS in Europe for year 2011 is shown in Figure 2. Norway is the leader in public funding, followed by UK. The Norwegian contribution reached EUR 200 million. Contributions from the business sector (Figure 2.b) are more equally spread among leading countries, like Germany, France, Norway, UK and Switzerland, if compared to the public funding (left side of Figure 2.a). The European corporate research investments in CCS for year 2011 are estimated at EUR349 million [Corsatea, T et al. 2015]. The majority of companies investing in CCS research activities are concentrated in France, Germany, UK, Norway and the Netherlands. France and Germany show a significant research effort in CCS research, however not translated into the deployment of the technology: (i) French investors are looking at the technological deployment abroad, and (ii) Germany moved from CO2 storage to utilisation, pushed by legal issues and lack of public acceptance [Corsatea, T et al. 2015].

                                

(a)

(b)

Figure 2. Share of the ten European leading countries in terms of public (a) and corporate (b) R&D funding in CCS technologies for year 2011. [Corsatea, T et al. 2015]

 

Overall, Figure 3 shows the total investment, public and corporate during year 2011. EU funding, which is excluded, would account for a 32% of additional investment; however, part of the private investment raised as a contribution to EU funded projects, is considered in the corporate figures. Norway is leading the overall investment, with a R&D budget around three times the size of the following significant investors: France, UK and Germany.

Figure 3. Leading European countries in total R&D investment in CCS technologies (EU funding excluded) for year 2011 [Corsatea, T et al. 2015]

In the case of bio-CCS, applicable to different facilities from power, industrial and fuel sectors, as well as be used in dedicated projects, or combined with coal and natural gas, there are around 20 dedicated bio-CCS projects in various stages of development worldwide. The operational projects are currently 5, capturing between 0.1-0.3 MtCO2/yr. They have an ethanol plant as source of CO2, and 2 of them store CO2, while the other 3 use it for EOR. The White Rose CCS project will have also the potential to co-fire biomass [Kemper 2015].  

Finally it is worth to mention the direct injection of CO2 in the deep sea as another option to store CO2. However uncertainties linked to environment, modification of water chemistry [Leung et al. 2014] have created controversial opinions about it. Some countries, like Norway, have created prohibited laws for this CO2 storage technique.

References

[Eurostat 2013] Eurostat: Net_electricity_generation,_EU-28,_2013_(1)_(%_of_total,_based_on_GWh)_YB15. URL: http://ec.europa.eu/eurostat/statistics-explained/index.php/File:Net_electricity_generation,_EU-28,_2013_(1)_(%_of_total,_based_on_GWh)_YB15.png

[GCCSI] GCCSI: Large Scale CCS Projects. URL: http://www.globalccsinstitute.com/projects/large-scale-ccs-projects#map

[GCCSI 2015] GCCSI: Global CCS Institute. URL: http://www.globalccsinstitute.com/

[SETIS 2014] SETIS: Carbon Capture Use and Storage. Available at: http://decarboni.se/publications/carbon-capture-use-and-storage-legal-resource-net

[EC 2013] EC: Eepr CO2 captura and storage projects. Available at: http://ec.europa.eu/energy/eepr/projects/files/carbon-capture-and-storage/ccs-eepr-summary_en.pdf

[Corsatea, T et al. 2015] Corsatea T, Fiorini A, Georgakaki A, and Lepsa B: Capacity Mapping: R & D investment in SET-Plan technologies Reference year 2011. JRC 95364/EUR 27184 EN. Publications Office of the European Union, Luxembourg. Available at: https://setis.ec.europa.eu/system/files/Capacities-map-2015.pdf

[Kemper 2015] Kemper J: Biomass and carbon dioxide capture and storage: A review. International Journal of Greenhouse Gas Control 40 (401–430). DOI:10.1016/j.ijggc.2015.06.012

[Leung et al. 2014] Leung DYC, Caramanna G, and Maroto-Valer MM: An overview of current status of carbon dioxide capture and storage technologies. Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews 39 (426–443). DOI:10.1016/j.rser.2014.07.093

 

What is the current and future potential place of CCS in the energy system?

In order to prevent the future potential of CCS, the context needs to be described. The policy, legal and regulatory context in Europe motivates the use of CCS technologies. The 2030 Climate and Energy Policy Framework proposes an important reduction of GHG to at least 40%, by 2030, to meet the 2050 objective. The renewable energy share is targeted at no less than 27%, whilst an indicative target of 27% is set for improving energy efficiency compared to projections of future energy consumption based on the current criteria. The sectors covered by the EU Emissions Trading System (EU ETS) will have to decrease their emissions by 43% by 2030, compared to 2005 emissions. The emissions reduction percentage will have to be of 2.2% from 2021 onwards. The EU ETS funding is designed in accordance with State aid rules so as to ensure the effectiveness of public spending and to prevent market distortions. The new financing instrument of the EU ETS, the Innovation Fund, proposed in [EU 2015] from last July 2015, proposes an amending to the Directive 2003/87/EC [Velkova 2015], [EP 2009]. Among other characteristics, it dedicates EUR 400 million allowances to support innovation, plus EUR 50 million, from the allowances that remain unused in 2013-2020. Moreover, the support is extended to low carbon innovation in industrial sectors. The European Commission has acknowledged the Energy Union Strategy to face climate change policies that will transform the European energy system. Among the reinforced dimensions: energy security, integration of the European market, energy efficiency, decarbonisation and research, innovation and competitiveness, CCS and CCU in power and industrial sectors are supported as a part of the solutions to reach 2050 climate objectives in a cost-effective way, needing from further technological development. The enabling policy framework, includes the abovementioned reformed EU ETS system and the general recommendations and needs to decrease GHG emissions.

The most recent report from [Pachauri et al. 2014] has concluded that without CCS it may not be possible to keep the global warming below 2 °C and also that the costs to mitigate climate changing can be 138% higher if  CCS is not considered.

The EU CCS Directive was adopted in April 2009. It stablishes the legal framework to safely store CO2, covering all the CO2 storage formations in the EU and the lifetime of the storage sites. By 2013, all the MS notified transposing measures, with conformity check ongoing. The CCS Directive has been evaluated by consultants and stakeholders, and it is under evaluation. However, the only project that provides practical experience to the Directive is ROAD, in Netherlands (Table 1). Up to date, there is willingness to consider the update of the guidance documents and limited amendment to CO2 capture retrofit provision [Velkova 2015].

As mentioned before, worldwide, there are 15 operating demonstration projects, using EOR as final CO2 disposal except for the Norwegian plants, which use dedicated geological storage. Overall, the installed capture capacity of the 45 projects is of 82.5 MtCO2/yr, with 40.3% of it placed in USA, followed by Europe (16.7%), Australia (14%), China (12.6%) and Canada (11%) [GCCSI], [Rubin et al. 2015].

According to the JRC-EU-TIMES model results [Simoes et al. 2013] CCS plays a major role in almost all decarbonized scenarios (see scenarios description in pages 175 and 176). The model assumes that CCS technologies enter the market in 2020 (which, at the current point, is too optimistic: the need for CCS is high, while progress has been slow), that there is no limitation to CCS penetration and that retrofitting of old power plants is not considered. Under these premises, CCS reaches 14-31% of the share of electricity produced in EU28 by 2050. In period 2020-2030, most CO2 capture is done in the power sector. In 2050, the situation changes and 24-36% is captured in industry, and 3-20% results from pre-combustion capture in coal gasification plants to produce hydrogen. This highlights the potential of CO2 capture not only to decrease CO2 emissions to the atmosphere, but to synthesise hydrogen. The overall amount of captured CO2 ranges between 500-965 Mt/yr. See in Figures 4 and 5 the evolution of electricity generated, in TWh, for coal and lignite, and natural gas plants. Note that highest contribution is expected from natural gas plants.

Figure 4. Evolution of electricity generated by coal and lignite power plants with CCS [Simoes et al. 2013]

Figure 5. Evolution of electricity generated by natural gas power plants with CCS [Simoes et al. 2013]

The curtailing of CCS has a larger impact on driving up electricity costs than restrictions on bioenergy, nuclear, wind or any other. Many predictive models explain that the decrease of CO2 emissions to meet the environmental objectives can be only solved with negative CO2 emissions, i.e. bio-CCS. However, other challenges remain unsolved, like food competence, water consumption, or auxiliary energy needs [Ashworth et al. 2015]. Summing up, CCS is needed to achieve the GHG emissions reduction at lower cost, while fulfilling energy needs. Moreover, heavy industries like steel, cement and chemicals cannot decarbonise further without CCS. Capture is required from the power or industrial plant. However, the appropriate supply chain needs to be in place to facilitate capture implementation [Zero emissions platform 2015].

References

[EU 2015] EU: COM(2015) 337 final

[Velkova 2015] Velkova M: Country updates : European Union

[EP 2009] EP: Directive 2009/29/EC of the European Parliament and of the council of 23 april 2009 ammending Directive 2003/87/EC so as to improve and extend the greenhouse gas emission allowance trading scheme of the Community. Official Journal of the European Union 140 (63–87)

[Pachauri et al. 2014] Pachauri RK, Allen MR, Barros VR, Broome J, Cramer W, and Christ R: Climate Change 2014 Synthesis Report

[GCCSI] GCCSI: Large Scale CCS Projects. URL: http://www.globalccsinstitute.com/projects/large-scale-ccs-projects#map

[Rubin et al. 2015] Rubin ES, Davison JE, and Herzog HJ: The cost of CO2 capture and storage. International Journal of Greenhouse Gas Control 40 (378–400). DOI:10.1016/j.ijggc.2015.05.018

[Simoes et al. 2013] Simoes S, Nijs W, Ruiz P, Sgobbi A, Radu D, Bolat P, Thiel C, and Peteves S: The JRC-EU-TIMES model - Assessing the long-term role of the SET Plan Energy technologies. Publications Office of the European Union. Available at: http://publications.jrc.ec.europa.eu/repository/handle/111111111/30469

[Ashworth et al. 2015] Ashworth P, Wade S, Reiner D, and Liang X: Developments in public communications on CCS. International Journal of Greenhouse Gas Control 40 (449–458). DOI:10.1016/j.ijggc.2015.06.002

[Zero emissions platform 2015] Zero emissions platform: An Executable Plan for enabling CCS in Europe

 

Who is/should be involved in CCS?

National governments

As described in section "What are industry and the EU doing about CCS?", the current European countries that are leading CCS are Norway, Netherlands, UK, Denmark, France, Germany and Switzerland. Specifically, Norway is the leader in public funding, followed by far by UK. Contributions from the business sector are more equally spread among leading countries, like Denmark, France, Norway, UK and Switzerland, if compared to the public funding share. As for the number of companies, the majority of them are concentrated in France, Germany, UK, Norway and the Netherlands.

As mentioned in "What are the barriers and needs of CCS?", there are (i) a lack of consistent and robust climate policy and the consequent call for large amounts of GHG reductions to stabilise climate change, and (ii) a lack of political commitment to CCS by some MS, exacerbated by problems with permission procedures. Overall, there is a small collective effort on technology cost reduction.

All MS have notified transposing measures of the CCS Directive. However, the CCS Directive has provided limited contribution to establish a CCS infrastructure, a consolidated the role of CCS in the EU climate and energy policy, or an increase of public acceptance and real uptake of CCS; also limited progress on readiness to retrofit for CO2 capture (except UK and France) [Velkova 2015]. This shows that even that the CCS basis (through the Directive) and needs (through modelling predictions) remain high; the progress has been slower than expected.

Industry

Industry CCS, since decarbonisation of large industrial processes is only possible through CCS once efficiency measures have been exhausted, could ease public acceptance if adopting CCS first in heavy industry.  

Renewable sector

Renewable sector could be the key enabler to modify or increase the public acceptance. Thus, the combined technologies between CCS and renewable technologies as geothermal or biomass together with informative campaigns may facilitate the deployment of CCS technologies.

CCS is relevant in the areas of climate change and greenhouse gas emissions, in the energy generation sector and in heavy industry. As overview, private and public bodies, as well as energy experts and lay public may be involved in a coordinated and proactive way. Industry must be taken into account and prioritised.

In summary and according to [Zero emissions platform 2015], cooperation is crucial among leading countries like Canada, USA, South Korea, China and Europe.

References 

[Velkova 2015] Velkova M: Country updates : European Union

[Zero emissions platform 2015] Zero emissions platform: An Executable Plan for enabling CCS in Europe

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