Monday, December 23, 2013

Illinois CO2 Storage Update

In an update on its carbon capture project at an ethanol plant near Decatur, Illinois, Archer Daniels Midland Co. says it has captured 685,000 metric tons of carbon emissions and stored them underground storage in the past two years. Carbon dioxide injections began in November 2011 at a rate of about 1,000 tons a month and are expected to continue through next year when the project is expected to reach the permitted level of 1 million tones. 

The project at the Decatur plant is among the largest CCS experiments in the country. The purpose is to test the storage potential of the Mount Simon Sandstone and the integrity of the overlying sealant rocks. Decatur was initially selected in October 2009 for the DOE Phase 1 research and development grants. Following successful completion of the Phase 1 activities, it was identified as one of the most promising industrial CCS projects through a competitive process and entered into Phase 2 with additional funding to begin design, construction, and operation.

Drilling began in February 2009 and a successful injection with a rate of 1000 tons per day was achieved in September 2009. 3D seismic surveys of the injection zone were completed in March 2010 in preparation for Phase 2.

Construction activities began at Decatur on August 26, 2011 with injection commencing in November 2011. As of April 2012, the project has successfully stored over 110,000 tons of CO2. In September 2012, the DOE marked 2 major milestones for the Decatur CCS project: The construction on the project’s storage facility, as well as the public opening of the National Sequestration Education Center. In November 2012 Decatur project completed its first year of CO2 injection operations with a total of 317,000 tons having been buried at a rate of 1,100 tons/day.
The target formation, the Mount Simon Sandstone, was selected as the optimum saline sink because of its widespread nature and immediately overlying Eau Claire shale seal. The Mount Simon Sandstone also underlies one of the largest concentrations of coal fired power plants in the world. This makes the Mount Simon Sandstone one of the most significant carbon storage resources in the United States.
Archer Daniels Midland (June 2010) was selected to receive an additional $99 million in federal aid to help fund a second carbon sequestration project for which the company is awaiting regulatory approval. The goal is to store 1 million tons of CO2 per year for five years. The company hopes to begin the second project in early 2015.

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