Australia brings geological storage of CO2 expertise to northwest

31 July 2017

Geoscience Australia carbon capture and storage (CCS) researchers have delivered another successful round of capacity-building workshops in Xinjiang, in northwest China via the China Australia Geological Storage of CO2 (CAGS) project.

During the workshops, Geoscience Australia also participated in the launch of the Xinjiang Carbon Capture, Utilisation and Storage Engineering Research Centre in partnership with China's Ministry of Science and Technology through the Administrative Centre for China's Agenda 21 (ACCA21).

Geoscience Australia project leader Dr Andrew Feitz said participants at the workshop and research centre opening greatly appreciated the opportunity to interact with international experts from Australia, Europe and the US and make new connections within China across different industries.

A group of workshop participants gather around scientist holding a carbon dioxide video cameraGeoscience Australia researcher Dr Andrew Feitz trains Chinese counterparts in carbon capture and storage technology

"There was a real upbeat feeling about the potential for applying carbon capture and storage technology in the Xinjiang region," he said.

"Xinjiang is considered one of the most prospective areas for large-scale application of this technology, with the additional uses of captured CO2 for industries such as enhanced oil recovery. This is due to the relative proximity of comparatively cheap CO2 sources from nearby coal chemical plants and oil refineries."

Hosted by Xinjiang University, under the CAGS project, the workshops trained a combined total of 160 researchers and technicians in the latest CCS technology and techniques.

"It is likely that additional CO2 storage sites will need to be found as the Chinese Government explores additional uses for CCS technology such as coupling it with water recovery from deep saline groundwater resources," Dr Feitz explained.

The current, and third phase of the CAGS project, is due for completion in 2018 and discussions are already underway to build on this successful collaboration between Australia and China researchers.

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