Oil And Gas Corporations Are Developing Their Own Carbon Storage Regulations

Credit: Patrick Hendry/Unsplash

The scoop

Officials claim that international oil and gas companies are formulating their own regulations for contentious carbon-sequestration projects, but there is disagreement among them as to what those regulations should be, particularly with regard to proposed legislation that would provide protection from lawsuits over unfavourable side effects.

Two bills, one of which was partially authored by Chevron, were introduced last week in the Texas state legislature with the intention of protecting businesses that inject CO2 captured from factories, power plants, or the atmosphere into underground reservoirs from some litigation in the event that the reservoirs leak, cause earthquakes, or result in other harm. However, Oxy, formerly known as Occidental Petroleum, which has been a strident advocate for carbon capture, utilisation, and storage (CCUS), opposes the measures, forging an odd alliance with environmental organisations.

Tim’s view

The Texas argument highlights how established energy businesses are vying to establish the regulations for cutting-edge climate technologies and highlights a potential tension between the Biden administration’s claims to advance environmental justice and promote renewable energy growth.

Oil and gas corporations are increasingly focusing on CCUS because they see it as a way to keep producing and burning fossil fuels while leaving a smaller carbon impact. The majority of energy modellers concur that significant carbon capture will be required for the globe to reach the Paris Agreement temperature goals due to the economy’s reliance on oil and gas.

Texas in particular is eager to become a hub for CCUS. Global carbon capture is expected to more than treble by 2030, reaching 110 million tonnes annually. According to projections by the International Energy Agency, the annual demand for storage space might increase from roughly 40 million tonnes today to more than 5 billion by 2050.

According to certain businesses, liability restrictions for sequestration are a requirement for significant investment in developing technology. One of the measures was “helped author” by Chevron and the Texas Oil & Gas Association (TXOGA), according to a company spokeswoman, and was later introduced by Greg Bonnen, a Republican from the Dallas suburbs. BP’s representative stated the firm backs the proposal; Bonnen did not respond to a request for comment.

However, Oxy, which is pushing CCUS the hardest, said in a statement that it “oppose[s] shifting long-term liability” away from businesses and onto a state-managed trust fund because the projects are in its opinion low-risk: Safe, secure, and long-term CO2 storage is available from well-chosen and managed CCUS projects.

Although carbon sequestration has been carried out on a smaller scale for years without incident, environmental groups maintain the same position, albeit for different reasons, that it still poses a risk to groundwater and that businesses shouldn’t be completely exempt from liability for potential harm.

Read the full article here.


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Source: Semafor


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