Gulf Coast Carbon Center, along with IEAGHG, Bellona, and CCSA, hosted the only official UNFCCC Side Event on CCS at COP-23 as well as an exhibit booth at the event. In keeping with the theme of the host country, Fiji, the side event explored carbon capture and storage, and its relationship to small island developing states.

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Katherine Romanak at UNFCCC COP-23 Photo by IISD/ENB | Angeles Estrada

Speaking before the 150 attendees, GCCC’s Katherine Romanak explained the evolution of experience gained through the SECARB program, a DOE partnership, monitoring geological storage, which gives confidence to CCS technology. She said, “CCS works, and we know how to show that it works.” Romanak related the potential for storing gigatonnes of CO2 in offshore geologic formations and how environmental monitoring at CCS sites provides additional data on the health of local marine ecosystems. She invited countries interested in exploring their potential for offshore CO2 storage to join an initiative that began as a US DOE-led international project through the Carbon Sequestration Leadership Forum.

Other speakers included, Carol Turley from Plymouth Marine Laboratory, who discussed problems associated with ocean acidification, which results from the combination of carbon dioxide and seawater, and threatens marine communities throughout the globe. Such climate impacts are already having an effect in Trinidad and Tobago, where panel member David Alexander studies the potential for using CCS with ammonia and LNG production.

Mike Monea from the International CCS Knowledge Centre provided an update on the Boundary Dam project and Keith Whiriskey from Bellona outlined the need for infrastructure development to connect CO2 sources to storage sites. Oslo’s Vice-Mayor Geir Lippestad presented an innovative form of CCS using capture from a waste incineration project. Clara Heuberger of Imperial College provided a perspective on using CCS in support of renewables.

IEAGHGs, Tim Dixon, served as chair, setting the scene for the session, giving an update on how the London Convention was amended to allow for offshore CCS as a climate mitigation technology. He commented that, “the session showed why the oceans need CCS, and how it can be done in the perspective of small island states who need to move beyond their first NDCs to decarbonise their industrial sources.”

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Members of the panel “CCS developments towards a 1.5 world; will they help the oceans and Small Island Developing States?” Photo by IISD/ENB | Angeles Estrada

The University of Texas at Austin and Bellona Foundation hosted an exhibit booth on CCS Technology led by Hilary Olson. The IEAGHG, Carbon Capture and Storage Association, and CCS Knowledge also provided interesting information on CCS. A great location, hands-on activities, easy to digest FAQs, and insightful diagrams attracted participants from multiple continents to learn more about this carbon mitigation technology. While many people had ‘heard of’ CCS technology, they did not know the details and were interested to have someone explain the technology and how it could impact CO2 levels.

Official UNFCCC coverage of the side event provided by the International Institute for Sustainable Development can be found here. Side Event presentations are available by searching “7 November” and “enhancing ambition” at this link. The entire side event can be viewed online.

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Katherine Romanak and Tim Dixon speak to interested attendees at the exhibit booth

 

  • The Gulf Coasmarakesht Carbon Center will host the only official UNFCCC side event devoted entirely to CCS at COP-22 in Marrakech, Morocco November 7-18, 2016. The event is hosted in collaboration with IEAGHG, Carbon Capture and Storage Association (CCSA), and CO2GeoNet, and will focus on “Opportunities for Africa in Carbon Capture and Storage”.

    In addition to Katherine Romanak from the GCCC, Tim Dixon from IEAGHG, and Ton Wildenborg from CO2GeoNet, speakers will include Mike Monea from the newly-formed International CCS Knowledge Centre (an initiative of BHP Billiton and SaskPower), Felicia Chinwe Mogo from Nigeria, Joseph Essandoh-Yeddu from Ghana, and Tony Surridge from South Africa.

    The side event aims to show that CCS is a demonstrated technology for achieving emission reductions under the Paris Agreement. Progress towards CCS deployment in Africa and global CCS developments relevant for Africa, onshore and offshore will be presented. Steps for CCS pilot project development and new opportunities for technology transfer will be outlined.

    The side event will be held Tuesday November 8 from 11:30-13:00 UTC in the Mediterranean room for those attending the COP. For those who are not attending, the session can be viewed in real-time (local standard Morocco time) by using this link.

     

  • The Gulf Coast Carbon Center was delighted to host the first International Workshop on Offshore Geologic CO2 Storage. GCCC’s Katherine Romanak was instrumental in organizing the workshop with IEAGHG’s Tim Dixon, who is currently an Honorary Senior Research Fellow at BEG.

    Dixon emphasized the value of bringing together an international contingent to discuss carbon storage in offshore reservoirs. “Over 50 experts from 13 countries came together in a common recognition that there is a nexus of interests and needs converging in progressing CCS offshore, and that momentum is being created towards international collaborations not just in knowledge-sharing but towards pilot and demonstration projects.”

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    The workshop evolved as an outgrowth of BEG’s interaction with the Carbon Sequestration Leadership Forum and IEAGHG. In addition, Tony Surridge from the South African National Energy Development Institute was a co-host.

    IMG_5411The workshop made a notable historical mark as the first carbon sequestration-related effort to take advantage of the new financial instruments provided by the United Nation’s Climate Technology Centre &  Network, which provided Funding for Joseph Essandoh-Yeddu from Ghana and Felicia Mogo from Nigeria to attend.

    The aim of the workshop was to develop the first global needs assessment for offshore carbon storage. Its goals included initiating a discussion about the various aspects of offshore transport and storage; building an international community of parties interested in offshore storage; and facilitating countries to identify their specific issues, challenges, and opportunities.

    IMG_5403Topics of interest identified by the attendees included transitioning from pilot project to full-scale deployment; funding and finance; accelerating knowledge and technology transfer; regulatory development; infrastructure; and public engagement. Participants identified and defined synergies, common gaps, and goals in each of these areas, and action items, including future workshops and potential projects, were developed.

    The workshop included two days of keynote addresses, presentations by individual countries, and collaborative discussion. The attendees also took part in a half day Expo that included a tour of a pilot capture facility, a visit to the Bureau of Economic Geology’s core repository, demonstrations, and a poster session.

    IMG_5414-1Summarizing the importance of the workshop, GCCC’s Tip Meckel explained, “this is the first time that we’ve ever had so much international diversity and experience all sitting down with the common goal of figuring out how we can work together to make offshore CCS work. You can either dip your toe into the offshore or take a deep dive. This was a deep dive.”

     

    For a complete report of the workshop, please click here.

     

     

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