What is CCS?

Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) is the process of capturing carbon dioxide from the exhaust gas and storing it, also known as carbon sequestration, is a technology that aims to reduce emissions to the atmosphere. This method consists of three main stages: the separation of carbon dioxide, its transport and its depositing in an environmentally friendly manner, most often – underground storage methods in geological structures. It is used in the energy and chemical industries.

CCS technology is currently considered to be one of the most expensive. The most fund consuming stage is the process of carbon dioxide separation, requiring large amounts of energy and reducing the efficiency of power plants by up to 10%. To maintain the previous power more generators are needed.

CCS is believed to could cut CO2 emissions by 20% worldwide and according to the IPCC, to keep the global warming below 2 degrees by the end of the century.

Sequestration can be divided into three groups: sequestration in depleted hydrocarbon deposits, sequestration in deeply lying aquifers and sequestration combined with intensification of extraction and geothermal energy.

What are the steps of the CCS process?

  1. Carbon dioxide separation
  2. Compressing and liquefying under supercritical pressure conditions
  3. Transport to the place of storage

For the effective use of CCS technology, the following are needed:

  • CO2 separation in a number of power plants,
  • Appropriate storage capacity, i.e. the volume of depleted deposits to be used or the adaptation of appropriate geological objects (including drilling of wells, construction of surface infrastructure, comprehensive surveys from seismic to well testing),
  • Construction or supplementation (in the case of depleted deposits) of appropriate infrastructure,
  • Construction of pipelines to transfer CO2 from the power plant to the storage site,
  • Petrofabrics should be examined, the appropriate number of holes should be drilled, and leak tests should be performed,
  • Make a numerical model of the structure and design the sequestration method (number of wells and injection volumes),
  • The repository should be monitored during its operation (seismic, borehole, environmental) as well as at the stage of decommissioning and after closing the repository.