Thursday, August 16, 2007

Gas storage plan may go cold

Taken from

EXXONMOBIL has again raised doubts over the future availability of hydrocarbon reservoirs in Bass Strait for the storage of greenhouse gases.

The US giant's Esso subsidiary has revealed that apart from extending the life of the current oil and gas fields to more than 20 years and 30 years respectively, it was now launching a study into the untested gas potential of geological structures deep beneath the existing fields.

It is both depleted fields and the deeper untapped structures in Bass Strait that the planned $5 billion Monash Energy coal-to-liquids project in the Latrobe Valley, a joint venture between Shell and Anglo American, plans to use for carbon storage.

The Monash project plans to turn brown coal into gas for further conversion into 60,000 barrels a year of synthetic diesel. A key element of the project is the separation of a concentrated stream of carbon dioxide for geosequestration. Without carbon capture and storage (CCS), the greenhouse gas emissions would be at unacceptable levels.

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