Quantifying Geological CO2 Storage Security to Deliver on Climate Mitigation

4 Pages Posted: 4 Apr 2019 Last revised: 27 Oct 2020

See all articles by Juan Alcalde

Juan Alcalde

University of Aberdeen

Stephanie Flude

University of Edinburgh - School of Geosciences

Mark Wilkinson

University of Edinburgh

Gareth Johnson

University of Edinburgh - School of Geosciences

Katriona Edlmann

University of Edinburgh - School of Geosciences

Clare Bond

University of Aberdeen - King's College

Vivian Scott

University of Edinburgh - School of GeoSciences

Stuart Gilfillan

University of Edinburgh

Xènia Ogaya

University of Barcelona

Stuart Haszeldine

University of Edinburgh - School of Geosciences

Abstract

The Storage Security Calculator (SSC) is a tool to simulate the long-term (10kyr) security of CO2 storage at a basin scale. Simulations show that CO2 storage in regions with moderate abandoned well densities and that are regulated using current best practice will retain 96% of the injected CO2 over 10,000 years in more than half of cases, with maximum leakage of 9.6% in fewer than 5% of cases. Poorly unregulated storage is less secure, but over 10,000 years, less than 27% of injected CO2 leaks in half of the simulations; up to 34% leaks in just 5% of cases. This leakage is primarily through undetected and poorly abandoned legacy wells, and could be reduced through effective leak identification and prompt remediation of leakage. Natural subsurface immobilisation means that this leakage will not continue indefinitely. Regulators can most effectively improve CO2 storage security by identifying and monitoring abandoned wells, and perform reactive remediation should they leak. Geological storage of CO2 is a secure, resilient and feasible option for climate mitigation even in overly pessimistic poorly regulated storage scenarios and thus CO2 storage can effectively contribute to meeting the Paris 2015 target.

Keywords: Leakage modelling, GHGT-14

Suggested Citation

Alcalde, Juan and Flude, Stephanie and Wilkinson, Mark and Johnson, Gareth and Edlmann, Katriona and Bond, Clare and Scott, Vivian and Gilfillan, Stuart and Ogaya, Xènia and Haszeldine, Stuart, Quantifying Geological CO2 Storage Security to Deliver on Climate Mitigation. 14th Greenhouse Gas Control Technologies Conference Melbourne 21-26 October 2018 (GHGT-14) , Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3365663 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3365663

Juan Alcalde

University of Aberdeen

Dunbar Street
Aberdeen, Scotland AB24 3QY
United Kingdom

Stephanie Flude (Contact Author)

University of Edinburgh - School of Geosciences ( email )

Edinburgh, EH9 3JW
United Kingdom

Mark Wilkinson

University of Edinburgh

Old College
South Bridge
Edinburgh, Scotland EH8 9JY
United Kingdom

Gareth Johnson

University of Edinburgh - School of Geosciences

Edinburgh, EH9 3JW
United Kingdom

Katriona Edlmann

University of Edinburgh - School of Geosciences

Edinburgh, EH9 3JW
United Kingdom

Clare Bond

University of Aberdeen - King's College

Aberdeen, AB24
United Kingdom

Vivian Scott

University of Edinburgh - School of GeoSciences

Drummond Street
Edinburgh EH8 9XP, Scotland
United Kingdom

Stuart Gilfillan

University of Edinburgh

Xènia Ogaya

University of Barcelona

Gran Via de les Corts Catalanes, 585
Barcelona, 08007
Spain

Stuart Haszeldine

University of Edinburgh - School of Geosciences

Edinburgh, EH9 3JW
United Kingdom

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