Just now, China officially announced the completion of its first megaton carbon capture, utilization and storage (CCUS) project known as the Qilu-Shengli Oilfield CCUS.
Construction began in July 2021 and was led by China Petroleum & Chemical Corporation (HKG: 0386), also known as Sinopec and consists of two parts.
One is the Sinopec Qilu’s carbon capture system and the other is Shengli Oilfield’s carbon displacement and storage facility.
The CO2 emissions captured by Sinopec Qilu are transferred to the Shengli Oilfield facility for storage and further displacement, where the carbon is injected deep underground and used to push out oil – a process called enhanced oil recovery (EOR).
The Sinopec Qilu part of the project is designed to capture 1 million metric tons of carbon dioxide per year, which is the equivalent of planting almost 9 million trees and about the same amount of CO2 emitted by 600,000 economy vehicles.
Furthermore, it is equipped with a sophisticated compression and refrigeration unit, as well as with a system to liquify the captured CO2.
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Then once the liquified carbon has been transported to the Shengli Oilfield, it can be injected into the 73 nearby oil wells for EOR, while utilizing closed pipeline transportation of gas and oil to improve carbon capture rates.
Currently, the Qilu-Shengli Oilfield CCUS project is the largest of its kind in China and will serve as an industry benchmark.
In addition to the amount of CO2 it is expected to capture, the project will also help increase oil production by almost 3 million tons over the next 15 years.
As such, it is a crucial component of China’s strategy to reach peak carbon emissions by 2030 and achieve its net-zero goal by 2060.
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But it will certainly not be the only component.
Already with the launch of this project, last year Sinopec announced its plans to build another one just like it by 2025.
And to help improve the development of CCUS, the company has also stated its intentions to build a CCUS R&D center with a focus on technological breakthroughs.