Safer Carbon Capture and Storage

University of Oxford Press Release

Peer-Reviewed Publication

UNIVERSITY OF OXFORD

Safer carbon capture and storage

Atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) levels have increased significantly over the last 50 years, resulting in higher global temperatures and abrupt changes to Earth’s climate. Carbon capture and storage (CCS) is one of the new technologies that scientists hope will play an important role in tackling the climate crisis. It involves the capture of CO2 from emissions from industrial processes, or from the burning of fossil fuels in power generation, which is then stored underground in geological formations. CCS will also be key if we want to produce “clean-burning” hydrogen from hydrocarbon systems.

The UK government recently selected four sites to develop multi-billion-pound CCS projects as part of its scheme to cut 20-30m tonnes of CO2 per year by 2030 from heavy industry. Other countries have made similar carbon reduction commitments.

Depleted hydrocarbon reservoirs have a smaller (10%) storage potential compared to deep saline aquifers but are seen as a critical early opportunity in developing geological CO2 storage technologies. Fortuitously, CO2 has historically been injected into numerous depleted hydrocarbon reservoirs as a means of enhanced oil recovery (CO2-EOR). This provides a unique chance to evaluate the (bio)geochemical behaviour of injected carbon over engineering timescales. 

‘CCS will be a key tool in our battle to avert climate change. Understanding how CCS works in practice, in addition tocomputer modelling and lab-based experiments, is essential to provide confidence in safe and secure CO2 geologicalsequestration.’ Said Dr. Rebecca Tyne, Dept Earth Science, The University of Oxford

In a paper published, today in Nature, Dr. Rebecca Tyne and Prof. Chris Ballentine from Oxford University, lead a team of international collaborators to investigate the behaviour of CO2 within a CO2-EOR flooded oil field in Louisiana, USA. They compared (bio)geochemical composition of the CO2-EOR flooded field with that of an adjacent field, which was never subjected to CO2-EOR. Data suggest that up to 74% of CO2 left behind by CO2-EOR was dissolved in the groundwater. Unexpectedly, it also revealed, that microbial methanogenesis converted as much as 13-19% of the injected CO2 to methane, which is a stronger greenhouse gas than CO2

This study is the first to integrate state of the art isotopic tracers (noble gas, clumped and stable isotope data) with microbiological data to investigate the fate of the injected CO2.

Methane is less soluble, less compressible and less reactive than CO2, so, if produced, the reduces the amount of CO2 we can safely inject into these sites. However, now this process has been identified, we can take it into account in future CCS site selection.’ Said Prof. Chris Ballentine, Dept. Earth Sciences, The University of Oxford.

Additionally, the authors suggest that this process is occurring at other CO2-rich natural gas fields and CO2-EOR oil fields. Temperature is a critical consideration, and many CCS geological targets will be too deep and hot for microbesto operate. However, if CO2 leaks from deeper hot systems into similar shallower colder geological structures, where microbes are present, this process could occur. This research is critical for identifying future CCS targets, establishing safe baseline conditions and long-term monitoring programs, which are essential for low-risk, long-term carbon storage.

END

Full paper: https://www.nature.com/articles/s41586-021-04153-3#citeas

For interviews or other requests, please contact: 

Rob Ashley, Strategic Communication, Oxford University

Robert.ashley@tss.ox.ac.uk +44 (0)7490 688891

Prof. Chris Ballentine, Dept. Earth Sciences, The University of Oxford
Phone +44 (0)1865 272 938  https://www.earth.ox.ac.uk/people/chris-ballentine/ 

Rebecca Tyne, Dept Earth Science, The University of Oxford rebecca.tyne@earth.ox.ac.uk

About the University of Oxford

This work is the result of an international collaboration between Oxford University, ExxonMobil, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute, California Institute of Technology, CRPG-CNRS Université de Lorraine and the University of Toronto.

Oxford University has been placed number 1 in the Times Higher Education World University Rankings for the sixth year running, and at the heart of this success is our ground-breaking research and innovation.

Oxford is world-famous for research excellence and home to some of the most talented people from across the globe. Our work helps the lives of millions, solving real-world problems through a huge network of partnerships and collaborations. The breadth and interdisciplinary nature of our research sparks imaginative and inventive insights and solutions.

Through its research commercialisation arm, Oxford University Innovation, Oxford is the highest university patent filer in the UK and is ranked first in the UK for university spinouts, having created more than 200 new companies since 1988. Over a third of these companies have been created in the past three years.


JOURNAL

Nature

DOI

10.1038/s41586-021-04153-3 

METHOD OF RESEARCH

Experimental study

ARTICLE TITLE

Rapid microbial methanogenesis during CO2 storage in hydrocarbon reservoirs

ARTICLE PUBLICATION DATE

22-Dec-2021

COI STATEMENT

N/A

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Gregory Woods
December 29, 2021 2:04 pm

Why?

gringojay
Reply to  Gregory Woods
December 29, 2021 2:14 pm

Maybe:

99DF27CA-7B6B-4822-B66E-C10D44407EE4.png
n.n
Reply to  gringojay
December 29, 2021 3:26 pm

There are [super] precedents for planned people… parent… personhood.

TallDave
Reply to  Gregory Woods
December 30, 2021 6:10 am

to sell to farming tunnels for huge profits in 2333, when food production for 333 billion people has depleted all but 33 ppm of atmospheric CO2

Last edited 23 days ago by TallDave
Patrick healy
Reply to  Gregory Woods
December 30, 2021 6:41 am

I stopped reading after the blatant lie – ie, the first sentance.

John in Oz
Reply to  Patrick healy
December 30, 2021 2:04 pm

Atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) Higher global temperatures have increased significantly over the last 50 years, resulting in higher global temperatures atmospheric carbon dioxide levels.

John Hultquist
Reply to  Gregory Woods
December 30, 2021 12:14 pm

“to investigate the behaviour of CO2 within a CO2-EOR flooded oil field”

This seems like a reasonable thing to do – –
. . . despite the fact that Earth sequests CO2 long term at no cost.

Governments have already decided to reduce CO2, but that is not what this research was about. Because it is going to be done, should they understand the consequences?

Steve Case
December 29, 2021 2:05 pm

CO2 sequestration is an idea with out merit.

Paul S.
Reply to  Steve Case
December 29, 2021 2:27 pm

As are bird choppers and bird fryers

n.n
Reply to  Paul S.
December 29, 2021 3:29 pm

Ah, the Green gauntlet, the Green blight generally, and intermittent/renewables, of course.

George Daddis
Reply to  Steve Case
December 29, 2021 3:40 pm

A solution without a problem.

MarkW
Reply to  George Daddis
December 29, 2021 8:12 pm

A solution that doesn’t work, for a problem that doesn’t exist.

Peter F Gill
Reply to  MarkW
December 29, 2021 11:57 pm

Put succinctly Mark. You need to add “at high unnecessary cost and a waste of time for all those involved”.

Reply to  George Daddis
December 29, 2021 11:37 pm

A solution that doesn’t work, to a problem that doesn’t exist, imposed by public servants who dont serve the public…

Robertvd
Reply to  Steve Case
December 29, 2021 4:00 pm

But pays a huge salary.

Derg
Reply to  Steve Case
December 29, 2021 5:07 pm

Exactly, What about the trees and plants?

PCman999
Reply to  Steve Case
December 30, 2021 12:34 am

They can collect carbon credits while the idiot socialists are handing them out and sell freshly made methane when it’s ready in the future.

DMacKenzie
Reply to  Steve Case
January 1, 2022 11:09 am

CCS is an excellent idea….so that we can readily release just the right amount of CO2 should the ice sheets start expanding next 1/2 Milankovich cycle. Plans to turn CO2 into limestone are much less good in this respect…. /s

markl
December 29, 2021 2:14 pm

So they capture and store it. Then what? Use it for soda pop? Don’t we have enough now for our needs? When they figure out CO2 released by fossil fuel burning isn’t the culprit they thought will they just release it again? What a colossal waste of space, time, materials, energy, and money.

Nick Graves
Reply to  markl
December 30, 2021 1:38 am

Since diet Coke is really horrible when it goes flat on a hot day (you know, that principle carbonistas refuse to understand), perhaps the same is also true of oil?

Linda Goodman
December 29, 2021 2:16 pm

I knew from the title that Charles Rotter wrote it. Does he represent the fence-sitting of WUWT? Shameful, really.

Old Retired Guy
Reply to  Linda Goodman
December 29, 2021 2:39 pm

You don’t understand the process.

Jeff Alberts
Reply to  Linda Goodman
December 29, 2021 4:54 pm

He didn’t write it, he posted it. Reading comprehension is a thing, you know.

philincalifornia
Reply to  Linda Goodman
December 29, 2021 5:37 pm

….. he ain’t no fence-sitter.

From someone who has the pleasure of knowing him personally.

Federico Bär
Reply to  philincalifornia
January 1, 2022 9:51 am

I know this site since just a very short time but I‘m convinced that Mr Charles Rotter is the opposite of a fence-sitter. To have reading comprehension is very helpful indeed.
.+

Kazinski
December 29, 2021 2:17 pm

Wait. Mostly worthless CO2 is converted in to methane? And just as a side effect of injecting it in the ground to produce more oil?

And they’re saying its a bad thing?

Curious George(@moudryj)
Reply to  Kazinski
December 29, 2021 3:08 pm

Where does the energy necessary for this conversion come from?

HotScot
Reply to  Curious George
December 30, 2021 1:33 am

Fossil fuel manufactured wind turbines and solar panels. Seriously, this is the utopia they all imagine is waiting for them.

EDIT: In fact, Chinese manufactured turbines and panels, se we’re paying to clean up China’s CO2.

Only the green lunatics could make it up.

Last edited 23 days ago by HotScot
Thomas Gasloli
Reply to  Kazinski
December 29, 2021 4:39 pm

Exactly. If putting CO2 into depleted oil fields coverts them back into active nat gas fields that sounds like a potential profit making venture. Climate science may be good for something after all.😃

Bruce Cobb
Reply to  Thomas Gasloli
December 30, 2021 5:42 am

Shirley you jest. The only “profit” would come from huge subsidies. The EROI on such a venture would be laughably small.

Rolf H Carlsson
December 29, 2021 2:20 pm

As if the atmosphere were a closed system! Ever heard about Henry’s law? In time the CO2-balance between the sea and the atmosphere will return to “status quo ante bellum”.

Oldseadog
December 29, 2021 2:34 pm

” CO2 levels have increased ….. resulting in higher global temperatures and abrupt changes to earth’s climate. ”
Proof please.

Chaswarnertoo
Reply to  Oldseadog
December 29, 2021 3:53 pm

Tumbleweed.

Rich Davis
Reply to  Oldseadog
December 29, 2021 4:08 pm

“From YouReekAlot!”

Retired_Engineer_Jim
Reply to  Oldseadog
December 29, 2021 5:38 pm

“abrubt”???

Geoffrey Williams
December 29, 2021 2:54 pm

They can put-out all the ‘studies’ they like but they will never convince me that this whole thing (carbon capture)is an exercise in futility ! !

Geoffrey Williams
Reply to  Geoffrey Williams
December 29, 2021 2:57 pm

See above; what I meant to say is ‘nothing more than an exrcise infutility’

alastair gray
Reply to  Geoffrey Williams
December 29, 2021 4:35 pm

Well in a previous job I was a leading luminary in an oil and gas company that produced gas from the Turkish Black Sea. We piped it from about 30 km offshore , processed it and put it into the Turkish gas grid . We got a price of $10 per thousand Cu ft- a good price before present shenanigans . the operating cost of producing this gas was about $5 per thousand cu ft. Now if we had wanted to generate electricity and do CCS then for every Kg of gas produced we would produce 3 Kg of wet CO2. an extremely nasty and corrosive substance which we would then pump down into the ground at at least the same cost per kg as producing it in the first place. So it would cost at least 3 times as much to sequester the gas thereby consuming all profit and incurring a huge loss. And that is without thinking about all the nitrogen involved I know that the learned fools of Oxford Dr. Rebecca Tyne and Prof. Chris Ballentine are rather like the learned fools of BEIS and the Dept of Energy , to say nothing of the idiots at The Committee for Climate Change but someone somewhere must be capable of putting together a spreadsheet a spotting a dud when they see one

Last edited 23 days ago by alastair gray
Zig Zag Wanderer
December 29, 2021 3:00 pm

Methane is less soluble, less compressible and less reactive than CO2

Methane is less reactive than CO2? I thought CO2 was pretty much totally unreactive. Methane burns quite easily.

Philip
Reply to  Zig Zag Wanderer
December 29, 2021 9:20 pm

They use CO2 as an inert gas for welding

PCman999
Reply to  Zig Zag Wanderer
December 30, 2021 12:40 am

If CO2 is wet, mixed with water, it becomes an acid – think soda pop.

Nik
December 29, 2021 3:06 pm

An expensive solution looking for a problem.

AndyHce
Reply to  Nik
December 29, 2021 3:43 pm

A process to harvest more subsidies: problem defined and solved.

December 29, 2021 3:19 pm

Unexpectedly, it also revealed, that microbial methanogenesis converted as much as 13-19% of the injected CO2 to methane, which is a stronger greenhouse gas than CO2.

Unexpected by who? Where do these people get their education from?

A gas mixture of 80% H2 and 20% CO2 can be routinely used for culture of methanogens. However, a 50:50 mixture of H2-CO2 is preferred by some investigators (12), because this gas mixture is more dense and not as easily displaced by air when culture containers are opened.

Zeikus, J.G., 1977. The biology of methanogenic bacteria. Bacteriological reviews, 41(2), pp.514-541.

And just in case someone wants to query where the hydrogen comes from, for good measure there is this geological evidence of the presence of hydrogen gas in oceanic basalt.
:
Welhan, J.A. and Craig, H., 1983. Methane, hydrogen and helium in hydrothermal fluids at 21 N on the East Pacific Rise. In Hydrothermal processes at seafloor spreading centers (pp. 391-409). Springer, Boston, MA.

Rich Davis
Reply to  Philip Mulholland.
December 29, 2021 4:20 pm

Ok sure, 80% hydrogen in a field that has had massive quantities of CO2 injected.

Sorry, the logical conclusion would be that the methane is left over from the original oil & gas deposits, isn’t it?

Reply to  Rich Davis
December 29, 2021 10:55 pm

Ok sure, 80% hydrogen

Did you even both to read past that point?

menace
Reply to  Philip Mulholland.
December 30, 2021 12:35 am

I agree with Rich, if you pressurize a depleted petroleum producing formation it seems reasonable that it could induce more gas production. Not sure how they can tell the origin. Possibly they can tell based on a lack of propane and butane in the mix, i.e. if it was nearly pure methane that might point to methanogens as the source.

Last edited 23 days ago by menace
Rich Davis
Reply to  Philip Mulholland.
December 30, 2021 11:51 am

Yes, I bothed 😜
Whether you’re talking 80% or 50% H2, it makes no sense at all.

If there was a large amount of hydrogen then why would they not have seen that while the field was producing oil/gas?

If the field had methane (pretty much every petroleum formation does, right?), then there was a lot leftover when economic production ended. If you inject CO2, diffusion of CH4 out of the bearer rocks and diffusion of CO2 into the rocks has to occur, correct?

Chaswarnertoo
December 29, 2021 3:53 pm

The opening sentence is complete BS.

Rich Davis
Reply to  Chaswarnertoo
December 29, 2021 4:25 pm

The closing sentence, too, and everything in between.

Jon R
December 29, 2021 4:04 pm

Isn’t this what my face mask is for?

Howard Dewhirst
December 29, 2021 4:18 pm

Don’t forget that China emits >9,000 million tons and rising every, and that 7,800 million tons of CO2 puts just 1 ppme into the atmosphere. But more importantly CO2 increases over the last 300 years do not correlate with temperature increases but do correlate with increased greening of the planet; so why pump CO2 into the ground?

Rich Davis
Reply to  Howard Dewhirst
December 30, 2021 4:02 pm

Save it for later?

Chris Hanley
December 29, 2021 4:29 pm

The cartoon perpetuates the fiction that CO2 is synonymous with air pollution.
The cartoonist is obviously victim of that intentionally promoted misconception.

Last edited 23 days ago by Chris Hanley
Olen
December 29, 2021 4:37 pm

Being for natures natural ways as promoted by progressives you would think they would be for the natural use of Co2 in nature such as in plants. The perfect sink is plants and it costs not much.

michael hart
December 29, 2021 4:45 pm

It would be easier and safer to store nuclear waste in the same locations.

That’s not meant to be a criticism of nuclear. With proper development of Thorium reactors, waste levels would be reduced by orders of magnitude, accompanied by massive economic increases in efficiency.

Chas Wynn
December 29, 2021 5:01 pm

They are going to need a bigger trough with all the extra snouts showing up for this green gravy. It’s the sole rationale for this sand pounding.

Bill
December 29, 2021 5:11 pm

The global lockdown during COVID had no effect on CO2. Why would they think this midget operation would?
 
It’s the UK’s version of Solyndra. Several new studies make it clear that, as fast as they could remove carbon from the atmosphere, nature will put it right back in.
 
https://scc.klimarealistene.com/produkt/the-impact-of-human-co2-on-atmospheric-co2/
 
https://scc.klimarealistene.com/2021/10/new-papers-on-control-of-atmospheric-co2/

bluecat57
December 29, 2021 7:13 pm

Safer than well-maintained trees or a remote forest?

Jules Guidry
December 29, 2021 7:25 pm

Academia and “Science”. Who trusts them for just about anything they proclaim anymore?
This project looks like a boondoggle to make somebody rich(er) off of taxpayers backs.
The grifters are everywhere.

Doonman
December 29, 2021 8:08 pm

One ton of CO2 occupies 556.2m³ of volume at STP.

Do the math. Apparently, any CCS must be pressurized or there won’t be room to make any difference. I wonder where the energy to compress all that CO2 will come from. I wonder what happens if the containment leaks.

Rich Davis
Reply to  Doonman
December 30, 2021 4:13 pm

That’s why they want to inject into brine where large quantities can be dissolved and remain dissolved (unless it heats up for some reason)

December 30, 2021 12:31 am

‘CCS will be a key tool in our battle to avert climate change. Understanding how CCS works in practice, in addition tocomputer modelling and lab-based experiments, is essential to provide confidence in safe and secure CO2 geologicalsequestration.’ Said Dr. Rebecca Tyne, Dept Earth Science, The University of Oxford

PCman999
December 30, 2021 12:31 am

“Unexpectedly, it also revealed, that microbial methanogenesis converted as much as 13-19% of the injected CO2 to methane”
I think they just found a way to make ccs economically viable – collect carbon credits while idiot socialists are handing them out, and sell freshly made methane when sanity returns.

David Dibbell
December 30, 2021 3:29 am

“Unexpectedly, it also revealed, that microbial methanogenesis converted as much as 13-19% of the injected CO2 to methane, which is a stronger greenhouse gas than CO2 of course a clean-burning fuel.”  There we have it, renewable energy from sub-terrestrials! Who knew?

December 30, 2021 4:41 am

“CCS will be a key tool in our battle to avert climate change” says Dr Rebecca Tyne.

It is a most revealing statement in that it is a non scientific, emotional and erroneous statement totally unworthy of anyone claiming to be a scientist. What does she wish to avert? Is it in fact possible, and where does CCS fit into that perspective amid all the other factors that influence change in the climate? These are just the immediate questions.
With views like that anything she produces will have little credibility in determining whether CCS is a ‘key tool’ or not.

The really serious aspect of this is that the article is peer reviewed and stems from a University claiming to be at the top of the academic excellence scene.
It seems to me that academia these days is hell bent on destroying its reputation.

Heaven help us when scientists indulge in the relentless hysterical propaganda which infects the airwaves these days.

Bruce Cobb
December 30, 2021 5:50 am

Atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) levels have increased significantly over the last 50 years, resulting in higher global temperatures and abrupt changes to Earth’s climate.

Whoopsie, back through the Looking Glass we go, into the upside down and backwards la-la land of Warmunist ideology. The steady climb in CO2 levels haven’t resulted in anything except a greener planet. There have been some rather abrupt changes to people’s mental ability and emotional stability though.

TallDave
December 30, 2021 6:08 am

if CERES can be believed you may want to be sure there’s a button marked RELEASE on it

Bruce Cobb
December 30, 2021 8:30 am

Safest, cheapest, and smartest CCS: None. We win, as do the plants. Win-win!

BCBill
December 30, 2021 8:41 am

Anybody undertaking carbon capture should be charged with a crime against humanity

griff
December 30, 2021 9:36 am

We have yet to see any site which can be profitable/economic without also involving enhanced oil recovery…

How is the UK effort going to be funded?

peter dimopoulos
December 30, 2021 11:19 am

Hello…the best solution is ‘Temperature Capture’ technologies. I need a SPAC to finance my multi-billion dollar idea…
Imagine taking all that excess heat out of the atmosphere.

December 30, 2021 2:39 pm

I attended US DOE’s first CCS confrerencevin 1999. Nothing new here. Will never fly. Spend away!

catcracking
Reply to  David Wojick
December 30, 2021 7:09 pm

CO2 sequestration, sequesters more O2 than Carbon. Does that make sense?

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