With Carbon Capture being given the go-ahead today by the UK government and new clean coal being the way in which the government wishes to go with their need to meet the UK’s energy needs, have they made the right choice?
The government has stated that this carbon capture will cut the CO2 emissions from the new power plants the government has proposed to build by 90%.
Whilst the method of carbon capture has been proved to work, it has not been carried out on anything of this scale. The system was almost implemented in Scotland in the Miller field and was ended prematurely due to the government’s slow reaction to the proposition by BP.
Schemes already in action
Norway's StatoilHydro has already used this system at Sleipner since 1996. This site has stored about one million tonnes of CO2 a year, and the Snøhvit gas field in the Barents Sea stores 700,000 tonnes of CO2 per year.
The Weyburn-Midale CO2 Project started in 2000, Weyburn is located on an oil reservoir discovered in 1954 in Weyburn, southeastern, Saskatchewan, Canada.
There is also another scheme in In Salah, Algeria .
Not only does the system allow clean coal, the carbon dioxide can be used, before it is pumped below the ground into empty oil fields, to extract extra oil than is normally not taken from the oil fields.