The Regional Carbon Capture Deployment Initiative has been conducting regional scale modeling on potential CO2 sources, storage opportunities, and transport corridors since 2017. The first phase of this modeling is concluding in December, 2019. A forthcoming analytical report will be released by the Initiative in early 2020.
The primary goal of this analysis is to identify the fleet of industrial and power facilities where carbon capture has been made economically feasible by the 45Q tax credit, then link these sources to potential storage and utilization sites in deep geologic saline formations or hydrocarbon basins. Sophisticated models are also used to envision and plan regional scale CO2 transport infrastructure to most efficiently link these sources and storage locations.
Data sources and inputs into the Regional Carbon Capture & Storage Analysis
This analysis is focused on carbon capture and storage opportunities in two regions: the West and the Midwest. States in the south central region of the US, such as Texas, Oklahoma, and Louisiana, are also included as primary destination markets for CO2 storage and utilization, as well as sources of CO2 from a diverse array of industrial and power facilities.
Industrial facilities with large quantities of emissions, consistent and continuous operating periods, and production processes with identifiable application points for capture equipment retrofit (among many other factors) are needed to achieve economically efficient carbon capture. The purity or concentration of CO2 emissions being emitted at the facility is a primary factor in estimating capture costs.
Industries with high purity CO2 emissions, such as ethanol refining, natural gas processing, and ammonia production, provide significant potential for low cost carbon capture that requires only compression and dehydration of emissions. The use of amine separation equipment to capture lower-concentrated CO2 opens up more opportunities in industries such as cement production, oil refining, steel, and hydrogen. In some cases, carbon capture represent one of the only significant method for industrial processes to decarbonize. Finally, power facilities that use coal and natural gas as an energy source are also included in this analysis as potential sources of CO2 with capture retrofit.
A number of studies coordinated by the US Department of Energy and the US Geological Survey, and conducted by research organizations in many states, have identified ample CO2 storage opportunities in deep geologic formations throughout the US. The primary focus of these studies is to identify safe, secure, and long-term storage locations. Deep saline formations across the continent have the potential to provide permanent storage of quantities equivalent to hundreds of years of US CO2 emissions. There also currently exists economic demand for CO2 for utilization and storage in enhanced oil recovery operations.
CO2 must be transported from capture facilities to storage locations, often by tanker trucks or pipeline. Coordinated, long term planning of CO2 transport infrastructure will provide the most economically efficient method for transporting the quantities of CO2 that the US will need to store in order to meet international emissions and temperature goals by mid-century. Unlike other types of transport infrastructure, CO2 pipelines present virtually no risk to environmental or human health, as the materials being transported are not flammable or toxic, and are continuously being released by facilities throughout the country.
Analysts with the Regional Carbon Capture Deployment Initiative collaborate with Los Alamos National Laboratory, utilizing the SimCCS model to optimize CO2 transport infrastructure and plan a number of potential scenarios for regional capture and storage.
Collaborators and Partners
The Regional Carbon Capture Deployment Initiative analysis has been made possible through close collaborations between a number of institutions, organizations, and entities, such as: Great Plains Institute, Los Alamos National Laboratory, Stanford University, Indiana Geological and Water Survey, Advanced Resources International, the National Energy Technology Laboratory, US Environmental Protection Agency, US Dept of Energy, and Ohio State University. A full list of contributors and data sources will be provided in the forthcoming analytical report.
Analytical Report: Late Winter 2020
The Regional Carbon Capture Deployment Initiative will release an analytical report in late Winter 2020. This report will provide data sources, detail the analytical methodology, and identify potential capture facilities throughout the Western and Midwestern regions. Primary modeling scenarios and conclusions on regional CO2 capture, transport, and storage opportunities will also be reported.
Stay tuned for the release of the analytical report here on this page in early 2020.
For more information or to ask questions about the Regional Initiative’s analysis, methodology, and sources, feel free to contact:
Director of Research, Great Plains Institute