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Petroleum Technology Research Centre Tapped by Japanese Researchers and Companies for Its Expertise on Carbon Capture and Storage
Monday, Jun. 3, 2013
Originally Posted: 06.03.2013, at www.ptrc.ca 

Three recent visits by Japanese researchers and technology developers to the PTRC have highlighted the burgeoning need in other parts of the world for the wealth of knowledge created by the PTRC’s two major carbon storage projects – Aquistore and the IEAGHG Weyburn-Midale CO 2  Monitoring and Storage Project – and the potential for collaboration with companies and research organizations in different parts of the world.

With Japan now looking for alternative sources of electrical energy production – and eliminating most of its nuclear power generation – renewable energy like wind and solar, as well as coal-fired power plants have emerged as crucial for the country’s energy mix.  The expected increase in coal-fired energy means that Japan is showing significant interest in carbon capture and storage (CCS) as a means to offset increased carbon dioxide (CO 2 ) emissions from these facilities. 

Japan is already a world leader in designing CO 2  capture technologies, and developing measurement and monitoring techniques for use when CO 2  is injected underground.  But with a highly educated populace hungry for information on CCS, Japan is seeking not just scientific collaboration with the PTRC but also public education and outreach strategies and programs, which both the Aquistore and Weyburn-Midale projects have developed.

In March, officials from CRIEPI (Central Research Institute of Electric Power Industry) visited the PTRC to discuss public outreach and communications activities being planned in Japan surrounding proposed demonstration CCS projects.  The Aqusitore public open house, hosted in 2012, was discussed.  The researchers then also visited the Boundary Dam Carbon Capture facility, and met with SaskPower officials about their outreach efforts.

In late May, two additional Japanese companies held meetings with the PTRC – Japan CCS (a collaboration of 35 companies interested in the development and demonstration of cutting-edge CCS technologies) and NTT-Data (a company with CO 2  measurement and monitoring technologies that may be of interest to the PTRC). 

Japan CCS was interested in the measurement, monitoring and verification procedures that had been developed as part of the Weyburn-Midale CO 2  Monitoring & Storage Project.  Also of interest were the risk communications and analytical protocols that had been developed in response to allegations made back in 2011 that CO 2  was leaking from the oilfield.  PTRC staff set up meetings between the visitors and different companies and researchers involved in the CO 2 -EOR operations at Weyburn and Midale, including some of the researchers who conducted innovative testing that disproved the allegations of leakage at the site.

NTT-Data is seeking potential use of its technologies in North American CCS projects, and PTRC will investigate avenues of collaboration with them.

Through its world-leading research projects, PTRC will continue to expand its collaborative reach to different parts of the globe, involving research organizations and companies with a strategic interest in carbon dioxide storage.

 

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