CALGARY—Royal Dutch Shell plc has launched its Quest carbon capture and storage project in Fort Saskatchewan, Alta. The $1.35 billion facility is designed to capture one-third of the emissions from the company’s Scotford Upgrader, which turns oil sands bitumen into crude oil.
Capable of capturing and sequestering more than 1 million tonnes of carbon dioxide annually, the facility is a major step forward for Alberta’s energy industry; its carbon mitigation equals taking 250,000 cars off the road.
“Quest represents a significant milestone in the successful design, construction and use of carbon capture and storage technology on a commercial scale,” Shell’s CEO, Ben van Beurden, said.
“Quest is a blueprint for future CCS projects globally. Together with government and joint-venture partners, we are sharing the know-how to help make CCS technologies more accessible and cost-effective for the energy industry and other key industrial sectors of the economy,” he added.
Once Quest captures emissions, it transports the CO2 through a 65-kilometre pipeline and injects the greenhouse gas more than two kilometres underground. The liquid CO2 is injected below multiple layers of rock, becoming trapped within tiny pores between the rock. “Natural processes” then lock the CO2 into place, which makes it even more secure over time.
Undergoing testing earlier this year, Quest captured and stored more than 200,000 tonnes of CO2. The facility is now operating at full commercial scale, Shell said.
The project was built on behalf of the Athabasca Oil Sands Project, a joint-venture between Shell Canada Energy,Chevron Canada Ltd. and Marathon Oil Canada Corp. The governments of Canada and Alberta provided $865 million in funding for the project.
WATCH how Shell’s Quest project captures and stores carbon dioxide: