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CCS group reaches 14, contemplates 50mn mt/yr of capture by 2030

By Dale Lunan

ExxonMobil’s ambitious plan to lead the development of up to 100mn metric tons/year of carbon capture and storage (CCS) capacity in the Houston area is gaining traction, with three more major companies throwing their backing behind the idea on January 20.

Air Liquide, BASF and Shell are the latest to add their commitment to advancing large-scale CCS around Houston, which bills itself as the “energy capital of the world.”

There are now 14 companies evaluating how to use CCS technology at Houston-area facilities ranging from power generation to advanced manufacturing of plastics, motor fuels and packaging. Those companies could collectively capture and store up to 50mn mt/yr of CO2 by 2030, and increase that total to 100mn mt/yr by 2040.

“Large-scale carbon capture and storage in the Houston region will be a cornerstone for the world’s energy transition, and these companies’ efforts are crucial toward advancing CCS development to achieve broad scale commercial impact,” said Charles McConnell, director of the University of Houston’s Center for Carbon Management in Energy and a former assistant US energy secretary. “Houston has the expertise and leadership – including industry, academia and policymakers – to realise a low carbon, reliable and affordable energy future.”

Besides Shell, BASF and Air Liquide, the Houston CCS group includes ExxonMobil, Chevron, Calpine, Dow, INEOS, Linde, LyondellBasell, Marathon Petroleum, NRG Energy, Phillips 66 and Valero.