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The Low Carbon Economy Ltd

02 Apr 2009 05:04:06

Underwater gas finding could help with CCS

Underwater gas finding could help with CCS
Carbon dioxide injected underground for long-term storage could be monitored and traced by techniques developed for a research project into establishing whether water or rocks trap CO2.

Scientists led by the University of Manchester set out to establish how the greenhouse gas is stored underground and found that water can act as a significant carbon sink.

Their analysis of nine gas fields established that with the right geology, CO2 can be dissolved in water and stored safely for millions of years.

The study also discovered that chemical reactions with underground rocks played less of a role in storing CO2 than previously thought.

The discovery is useful for the carbon capture and storage (CCS) industry, as are the tools developed in the process of the scientists' investigations.

Professor Chris Ballentine of the University of Manchester, the project director, said his institution and the University of Toronto had combined their expertise to develop gas tracing.

He added: "This new approach will also be essential for monitoring and tracing where carbon dioxide captured from coal-fired power stations goes when we inject it underground. This is critical for future safety verification."

E.On, ScottishPower and the consortium including Peel Energy and RWE have all bid to build CCS demonstration plants.



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