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IEA Greenhouse Gas R&D Programme

New IEAGHG Report: Review of Constructability and Operational Challenges faced by CCUS Projects

IEAGHG have explored in the past techno-economic information of large demonstration projects and individual projects built in specific locations were explored in detail. However, a deep analysis of the construction and operation aspects, together with the factors for the project success was needed.

IEAGHG identified the need to provide a guide on constructability and operation for new CCS users.The objective of this study was to collect information from CCS projects to support the decisions during the transition from the planning to the execution phase.

This study analysed a complete list of large CCUS projects from which relevant experience could be extracted. The projects were divided into three categories: operating projects; under construction or at advanced development; and cancelled projects. Moreover, a guide for new entrants was included, aiming to provide material to aid potential developers with the planning phase of large-scale CCS facilities to ensure successful construction, commissioning and operation.

From the analysis, it can be extracted that key factors for the success of CCS projects include early design, which should include the integration with the original facility, previous testing under the specific conditions, and involvement of stakeholders from the early stages of the project.The business case and coordination of the cross-chain (including capture, transport, and use/storage) are essential to maintain the operation of the CCS project throughout its operational life.Other aspects will include detailed planning based on a simulation of the common construction site management, plant commissioning, start-up, maintenance, shut-down and decommissioning.

The reasons for cancellation include: lack of long-term economic viability (including dependency on government subsidies and changes on funding schemes); uncertainty around risk management and allocation; not enough integration of the capture system with the original facility, or lack of planning in advance (including technical aspects not related to the CCUS system); and flawed design which impacts on the construction and operation.

This study covers a new area and aims to serve as a guidance for future projects. IEAGHG will continue monitoring the constructability and operability aspects of large scale CCUS projects in the next years. 

To request a copy of the report, please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. referencing report number 2020-12.

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