With NETL leadership and support, researchers at Battelle successfully helped to pave the way for commercial deployment of carbon capture, storage and utilization (CCUS) technologies that will reduce the effects of climate change while utilizing America’s fossil energy resources through vital research associated with the Midwest Regional Carbon Sequestration Partnership (MRCSP).
CCUS has been identified as one of most reliable and feasible means of addressing climate change while still maintaining the flow of energy supplies to an increasingly tech-driven and power-hungry globalized economy. The Midwest region of the U.S. in particular is undergoing a major energy transition from coal-based sources to sharply increasing natural gas. This necessitates the use of CCUS for disposition of carbon dioxide, which requires characterization, qualification and development of numerous storage sites to complement the carbon capture. These future projects also offer a major employment opportunity for workers in the oil and gas related industries.
Moving this work forward was the MRCSP, a collaboration of nearly 40 government, industry and university partners joined to assess the technical potential, economic viability and public acceptability of CCUS technologies. The MRCSP’s work was funded mainly by the U.S. Department of Energy’s Fossil Energy and Carbon Management program, with significant co-funding from the Ohio Coal Development Office in the Ohio Department of Development, Core Energy, and several other partners. Battelle’s field research for the MRCSP was performed on the oilfield sites owned and operated by Core Energy.
Starting with an initial characterization phase in 2003, Battelle led the MRCSP in phases, moving to multiple small-scale pilot tests in a validation phase in 2005 and culminating in the large-scale development phase starting in 2008. The focus now shifts to commercialization of CCUS. Battelle will continue its leadership role as a co-founder, jointly with the Illinois State Geological Survey, of a new regional initiative, the Midwest Regional Carbon Initiative (MRCI), which will continue the work of the MRCSP and is especially focused on the storage/sequestration portion of the climate change mitigation approach.
“We met all our objectives and stored more than two million tons of carbon dioxide in three phases, effectively and safely. NETL is grateful for the hard work and dedication of Battelle and all of the MRCSP partners, and excited about the many results and lessons learned available through NETL’s Energy Data Exchange (EDX),” said Andrea McNemar, NETL project manager. “NETL and its partners are in a prime position to realize the vision of a decarbonized economy.”
NETL is a U.S. Department of Energy national laboratory that drives innovation and delivers technological solutions for an environmentally sustainable and prosperous energy future. By leveraging its world-class talent and research facilities, NETL is ensuring affordable, abundant and reliable energy that drives a robust economy and national security, while developing technologies to manage carbon across the full life cycle, enabling environmental sustainability for all Americans.