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UAE’s carbon capture project to remove 800,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide per year

Friday, Nov 07, 2014

Abu Dhabi: Abu Dhabi’s first Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) project will be the world’s first large-scale CCS project in the iron and steel sector, according to a global report published in the capital.

The project to remove 800,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions annually from Abu Dhabi’s atmosphere will start capturing carbon dioxide and injecting it into oil fields for oil exploration from 2016.

The joint venture of Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (Adnoc) and Masdar will capture carbon dioxide at Emirates Steel, the UAE’s largest steelmaker’s facility.

The project has a global significance, Brad Page, CEO of the Global CCS Institute, which published the report, told Gulf News.

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The annual Global Status of CCS: 2014 report finds there are now 22 carbon capture projects in construction or operation worldwide, a 50 per cent increase since 2011.

The report details progress on CCS over the past year, providing a raft of recommendations for decision-makers.

Asked about the criticism that existing CCS technologies are extremely costly, Page said the costs have gone down significantly in recent years.

The report details nine CCS projects under construction with investments totalling billions of dollars. Eight of these are expected to become operational by 2016.

“CCS in the power sector is now a reality with the world’s first large-scale CCS project operating at Boundary Dam, Canada. With eight major CCS projects anticipated to go live in a range of industries worldwide by 2016, this low-carbon technology is reaching the critical mass necessary for widespread deployment,” Page said during the release of the report.

The report found there are 14 CCS projects in advanced planning stage, including nine in the power sector, expected to be in a position to make a final investment decision in 2015.

Calling for financial and policy support structures to transition this portfolio of planned projects to actual projects by 2020, Page warned that CCS technology would not become widespread without policy parity with other clean technologies.

By 2016, CCS will be in operation in high carbon-emitting sectors such as chemicals and iron and steel. The world’s first commercial-scale chemical and bio-CCS plant at the Illinois Industrial CCS Project in the US plans to be operational in 2015.

CCS has been extended to a diverse range of sectors such as iron and steel, natural gas and power. These diverse and large-scale projects demonstrate that CCS is active, operational and viable, Page said. An important point is that the projects currently under construction are the result of visionary policy decisions made around five years ago.

“We simply can’t have an effective response to tackling climate change without CCS. Decisions and actions are required now to lay policy, legal and infrastructure foundations for wide-scale deployment post-2020,” Page said.

He called for “a year of action” on policy and deployment for CCS, saying, “Now is the time for decision makers to take stock of what has been achieved and build on these solid foundations so that CCS can make major contributions to reductions in greenhouse gas emissions.”

“We need to be clear that CCS is the only technology that can achieve large reductions in carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from industries such as iron and steel, chemicals and cement, which together emit 20 per cent of the world’s CO2. In fact, it is just as important to use CCS on industrial processes as in the electricity sector, which is currently the world’s largest CO2 emitter, accounting for up to 40 per cent of emissions,” Page said.

By Binsal Abdul Kader Staff Reporter

Gulf News 2014. All rights reserved.

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