Today’s news that Chevron Australia has offset close to five million tonnes of greenhouse gas at the Gorgon LNG project marks a significant milestone. Not only will it be an achievement for the company’s emissions reduction efforts, but for the development of carbon capture and storage (CCS) technology as well.
The Gorgon LNG facility in Western Australia implemented its CCS system – the largest of its kind in the world – in August 2019, marking a significant step towards reducing the plant’s carbon emissions. Over the course of the project’s life, the CCS system at Gorgon is expected to reduce CO2 emissions by 4 million tonnes annually, and more than 100 million tonnes of emissions over the life of the project.
Gorgon LNG project, which currently stands as the largest single resource development in Australia’s history, is at the forefront of a growing Australian industry for emissions reduction via CCS, which can serve as a pathway to the national oil and gas industry’s role in a cleaner energy future. Australia’s stable geological basins, infrastructure, regulation, and technical knowledge are all conducive to the development of an exciting and evolving sector.
As such, Chevron’s five million tonne milestone offers an opportunity for celebration; preventing that amount of CO2 from being vented into the atmosphere is the equivalent of saving a full year’s worth of carbon emissions from 1.6 million Australian passenger vehicles.
Australia has a natural competitive advantage to implement CCS with known high quality, stable geological storage basins, existing infrastructure, world-class technical expertise and regulatory regimes.
Additionally, as CCS technology continues to develop, it will also help to open other avenues, such as the development of large-scale hydrogen projects.
“Like any pioneering endeavour, it takes time to optimise a new system to ensure it performs reliably over 40-plus years of operation,” said Chevron Australia Managing Director Mark Hatfield.
“The road hasn’t always been smooth, but the challenges we’ve faced – and overcome - make it easier for those who aspire to reduce their emissions through CCS.
“We’re committed to sharing the lessons we’ve learned with state and federal governments, research institutes and other energy producers to assist the deployment of CCS in Australia.”
This significant achievement highlights the important role CCS can play in securing the future of Australia’s oil and gas industry in a cleaner energy future.