Australia’s leading carbon capture and storage research organisation, CO2CRC, has secured an additional $10.2 million to advance its Otway Stage 4 program, a multinational research program with leading researchers from Australia, the United Kingdom, the United States, South Korea and Japan.

The additional funding from BP, BHP, and ExxonMobil augments the $16 million investment already committed by Chevron Australia enabling further research infrastructure to improve CO2 storage processes in Carbon Capture, Utilisation and Storage (CCUS) projects.

The research program aims to provide research organisations with invaluable data to conduct commercially relevant trials to help accelerate technical development required to support CCS projects, at much lower cost. It also aims to support emerging technology such as Direct Air Capture (DAC), to allow for more than 4.8 billion tonnes of CO2 pa to be captured and stored beyond 2050.

Rachael Risucci, vice president gas and low carbon energy bp Australia said, “Carbon capture and storage has a critical role to play in global emissions reductions and bp is proud to be supporting CO2CRC as it progresses its research. The work being undertaken today will play an important role in future decarbonization efforts for Australia’s energy system.”

Rachael Risucci bp

From left to right – Dr Matthias Raab, CEO CO2CRC, Rachael Risucci, vice president gas and low carbon energy bp Australia, Martin Ferguson, Chairman CO2CRC, signing a ‘Collaboration on CCUS’ certificate between bp and CO2CRC to recognise the additional funding for the GeoCquest Field Validation project.

Dylan Pugh, Chair of ExxonMobil Australia said, “The work CO2CRC is leading with this next stage of its Otway project will provide important technical knowledge and data to lower the cost and accelerate CCUS projects across the country, including our own South East Australia Carbon Capture and Storage hub project in Gippsland and we’re pleased to be able to support it.”

Dylan Pugh left

Dylan Pugh, Matthias Raab, and Martin Ferguson holding the signed ‘Collaboration on CCUS’ certificate between ExxonMobil and CO2CRC to recognise the additional funding for the GeoCquest Field Validation project.
From left to right: Dylan Pugh, Chair of ExxonMobil Australia, Brian Kitney, Dr Matthias Raab – CEO CO2CRC, Bill McKenzie, Martin Ferguson – Chairman CO2CRC, David Byers.

The infrastructure funding will support drilling a new, deep well and installing and testing novel technologies at the Otway International Test Centre.

Graham Winkelman, Head of Carbon Management at BHP, said, “Partnerships with researchers and technology developers are a key part of broader industry action to address climate change, and the work of the CO2CRC is making an important contribution to the deeper understanding of CO2 storage processes in CCUS projects.”

CO2CRC Chief Executive Dr Matthias Raab said the funding ensures that the Otway International Test Centre continues as a critical national research infrastructure for applied research into CCS.

“As recognition continues to build on the role that carbon capture and storage must play on the road to emissions reduction, we are redoubling our efforts to tell the CCS story and build broader support for the technology,” Dr Raab said.

Key partners in the program are the University of Melbourne and Stanford University, who form the backbone of the project’s science program, opening doors to immeasurable knowledge and innovative breakthroughs and delivering a world-class science program alongside some of the finest minds from two of the most prestigious universities globally.

CRC5 PaulMoyneRig scaled

Image: CO2CRC Otway International Test Centre drilling rig project, 2019. 

The GeoCquest Field Validation project, a key part of Otway Stage 4, will deliver the CO2 injection and the science program, for which the CRC-8 well will be drilled later this year.

The proposed field trials of several technologies have been developed by CO2CRC and its research partners to improve characterisation and optimise utilisation of CO2 storage resources.

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