Sharjah National Oil Corporation (SNOC), one of the leading natural gas, condensate and LPG producers in the UAE, is planning to utilise its depleted reservoirs for carbon capture and storage projects.

SNOC’s Exploration & Production Manager Masoud Ahmed Al-Hamadi said that in addition to traditional oil and gas potential, the national oil company is seeking longer long-term alternative usage for its depleted wells.

“We have around 50 wells from depleted gas reservoirs that can be used as carbon storage and other source of energy,” he said during a virtual interview with Dubai-based energy consultancy Gulf Intelligence.

Al-Hamadi said SNOC currently has three “fairly” depleted gas fields out of which one has been converted into a gas storage facility while the other two have significant potential to contribute to the UAE’s decarbonisation agenda.

He said the biggest field, Sajaa, would be ideal for carbon capture and sequestration/storage (CCS) projects for the whole UAE in the coming years, subject to regulation and changes; “the Ministry of Energy and the Ministry of Climate Change and Environment is working towards that.”

The SNOC official emphasised that high levels of investment combined with regulations and carbon trading would bring down the costs and help CCS projects take off in the Middle East.

Commenting on ongoing exploration activities in the Sharjah emirate, Al-Hamadi said SNOC recently completed the 3D seismic survey of Area C, spread over more than 1,800 square kilometres in the eastern part of the emirate.

He said the survey data is being processed and company is looking forward identifying additional prospects for drilling purposes.

He also disclosed that SNOC is looking at decarbonising its operations as part of its 10-year vision, which is being finalised.

Noting that oil and gas companies are reducing carbon in their products using renewable or nuclear energy instead of conventional fuels for operations, and by increasing efficiency of equipment to reduce emissions, Al-Hamadi said SNOC has implemented its first solar power project for its facilities which will substitute burning of gas.

(Reporting by Anoop Menon; Editing by Bhaskar Raj)