Oil and gas fields in UK could become CO2 dumps, say MPs

2014-06-02 08:58 by Anja Reitz

The Energy and Climate Change Committee says nearby nations could capture the emissions from their power stations, then transport the CO2 offshore in pipes.

North Sea rocks that have been sucked dry of oil and gas could be pumped full of the unwanted CO2.

Critics say the idea is fanciful.

But Tim Yeo, the committee's chair, told the BBC that "the key to carbon capture and storage is economics".

"The UK's geology under the North Sea is a potential asset to exploit and if we can find ways of getting another income stream by accepting someone else's unwanted CO2 it might move forward the date when CCS (carbon capture and storage) in the UK is commercially viable," he added.

Mr Yeo also hopes that by forcing CO2 into the crevices containing residual trapped hydrocarbons, the UK will be able to squeeze more gas and oil from depleted reserves.

Overall, his committee is highly critical of the UK government's commitment to CCS.

It believes a new industry could be created to transport and store unwanted CO2.

"Any decline in North Sea (extraction) activity could be compensated for in carbon transport and storage activity," it says.

The idea is being promoted by the Crown Estate, which governs the UK's sea bed.


Source: BBC, , 20 May 2014

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