New potential carbon emission reduction enterprises in China: deep geological storage of CO2 emitted through industrial usage of coal in China

Deep geological storage of carbon dioxide (CO2) could offer an essential solution to mitigate greenhouse gas emissions from the continued use of fossil fuels. Currently, CO2 capture is both costly and energy intensive; it represents about 60% of the cost of the total carbon capture and storage (CCS) chain which is causing a bottleneck in advancement of CCS in China. This paper proposes capturing CO2 from coal chemical plants where the CO2 is high purity and relatively cheap to collect, thus offering an early opportunity for industrial-scale full-chain CCS implementation. The total amount of high concentration CO2 that will be emitted (or is being emitted) by the coal chemical factories approved by the National Development and Reform Commission described in this paper is 42 million tonnes. If all eight projects could utilize CCS, it would be of great significance for mitigating greenhouse gas emissions in China. Basins which may provide storage sites for captured CO2 in North China are characterized by large sedimentary thicknesses and several sets of reservoir-caprock strata. Some oil fields are nearing depletion and a sub-set of these are potentially suitable for CO2 enhanced oil recovery (EOR) and CCS demonstration but all these still require detailed geological characterization. The short distance between the high concentration CO2 sources and potential storage sites should reduce transport costs and complications. The authors believe these high purity sources coupled with EOR or aquifer storage could offer China an opportunity to lead development in this globally beneficial CCS option. (c) 2013 Society of Chemical Industry and John Wiley & Sons, Ltd