The US Department of Energy (DOE) has awarded more than $126.6m to the West Coast Regional Carbon Sequestration Partnership (WESTCARB) and the Midwest Regional Carbon Sequestration Partnership (MRCSP) to fund two large-scale carbon sequestration projects.
The industry partners will conduct large volume tests in California and Ohio to demonstrate the ability of a geologic formation to safely, permanently, and economically store more than one million tons of carbon dioxide (CO2).
'Collectively, these formations have the potential to store more than 100 hundred years of CO2 emissions from all major sources in North America,' said acting US deputy secretary of energy Jeffrey Kupfer.
The new projects will demonstrate the entire CO2 injection process - pre-injection characterisation, injection process monitoring, and post-injection monitoring - for large scale injections of one million tons or more to test the ability of different geologic settings to permanently store CO2.
The $126.6m DOE cash will be invested in the two projects over the next 10 years, while industry partners will cough up an additional $56.6m.
In the first stages of the projects, researchers will characterise the selected sites. Over the first 24 months, researchers and industry partners will then complete the modelling, monitoring, and infrastructure improvements needed before CO2 can be injected.
Each project will then inject one million tons or more of CO2 into a regionally significant storage formation. After injection, investigators will monitor and model the fate of the CO2 to determine the effectiveness of the storage reservoir.