Pilot Energy Receives Key Approval For Its Cliff Head CO2 Storage Project

Pilot Energy Receives Key Approval For Its Cliff Head CO2 Storage Project - Carbon Herald

Pilot Energy Limited (ASX: PGY) announced that the WA  31-L joint venture’s application to Declare a Greenhouse Gas Storage Formation over the WA 31-L licence area has been approved by the Commonwealth Minister for Resources and Minister for Northern Australia, the Hon Madeleine King MP. 

The Declaration instrument notes a storage capacity of 13.4 million tonnes for the Cliff Head Storage Formation which is sufficient for the initial stage of the MWCEP Cliff Head CO2 Storage project. 

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This key approval follows the application to the National Offshore Petroleum Titles Administrator in November 2022 and represents a material advancement in the development of Pilot’s Mid West Clean Energy Project (MWCEP) and Australia’s need to  accelerate progress to a net zero future. The Declaration is a key de-risking milestone for the  project as it is the key condition required for many of the MWCEP commercial agreements, including the WA 31-L acquisition deed between Pilot and Triangle Energy Limited. 

The Declaration is one of the first of its kind for an offshore CO2 storage project in Australia  and provides confidence in the Australian regulatory regime further de-risking the MWCEP for potential international project partners. 

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Pilot, along with Genesis, the MWCEP owners engineer and Pre-FEED contractor, expect to finalise the Pre-FEED work stream on the MWCEP by June 2024. With receipt of the  Declaration, the MWCEP can then proceed with the next phase of development which involves traditional owner and stakeholder engagement, CO2 storage project FEED and final selection of hydrogen and ammonia technology partners enabling Ammonia FEED to commence in 2H.

In parallel the MWCEP team will continue to engage with regulators to progress the  remaining project approvals including an injection licence and Federal and State  environmental approvals. 

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Executive Chairman Brad Lingo said: “This Declaration represents a material advancement in  the development of Pilot’s Mid West Clean Energy Project and is an exciting milestone for  CCS and clean energy production in Australia.” 

“On behalf of the entire Pilot team, I would like to thank the teams at NOPTA and NOPSEMA  (National Offshore Petroleum Safety and Environmental Management Authority) for the  constructive approach and engagement they have taken as Pilot progressed the first ever  application seeking approval of a Declaration of Storage Formation.” 

“As the Pilot team worked through this application, it has been with a singular goal of delivering  a project that can enable Western Australian emitters to take action with a clear opportunity to reduce carbon emissions through abatement and permanent storage on a cost-effective basis.”

“I’d like to also acknowledge the hard work of the NOPTA, NOPSEMA and Department of Industry, Science, Energy and Resources (DISR) teams as they assessed this first of its kind application,” he added.

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