CSLF Technical Group meeting in Warsaw– will this be the last CSLF meeting?

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By Tim Dixon

16 June 2023

The Carbon Sequestration Leadership Forum (CSLF) is a government-to-government initiative to accelerate the development of CCUS technologies, with some 25 country members. IEAGHG participates through an agreement from 2007. This year’s meeting was held in Warsaw on 13 June.

We heard about the CCS activities in Poland, and their national CCUS Working Group led by the Ministry of Climate and Environment. Poland has around 200Mt CO2 emissions pa from around 170 large point sources. They are involved in the EU’s CCS Interconnect transport project, and are looking at connecting cement plants. Their national storage capacity is around 12Gt, mostly in deep saline formations, onshore and offshore.

Two new projects were approved for CSLF recognition. One was in Brazil, Petrobras’s Santos Basin project. Known for its deep water depth, this has been operational since 2013, with increasing numbers of FPSO vessels (now 21) separating and re-injecting 40Mt of CO2, with plans to do this separation at sea-bed, and Petrobras now has expansion plans to develop it into a 60Mt pa hub project. The other project was in China, SINOPEC’s Qilu-Shengli Oilfield CCUS project, which started full scale operation in 2022.

As usual, we provided an update on IEAGHG activities, and I moderated a discussion panel on clusters and infrastructure. This panel heard about UK and USA government’s plans, and from INEOS, ExxonMobil and Battelle from their industry perspectives and on their plans. Another panel discussion covered lessons from storage projects.

What surprised many in the meeting was the proposal by the CSLF secretariat for the CSLF Technical Group to become dormant. The CSLF Policy Group had previously done similar and in effect migrated into the CEM-CCUS Initiative. The secretariat welcome comments from CSLF members on this proposal in the next couple of months.

After twenty years of existence, the CSLF Technical Group and its task forces have produced many good reports such as on an early storage capacity estimation methodology, Technology Roadmaps, on offshore storage, and on learnings from regulations on projects. It is intended these useful resources will continue to be made available through the website | Carbon Sequestration Leadership Forum (cslforum.org) or other means.

The CSLF meeting was followed by a one day workshop on CCUS in Central and Eastern Europe. Here we heard more about the CCUS activities in Poland, including their regulations, and from the CCS4CEE project which is assessing potential and assisting CCS developments in eleven countries in the region. Details were provided on a number of EU-supported projects including the Lafarge and Heidelberg cement-based projects in Poland. Interesting aspects of these included that Lafarge’s Kujawy project proposes to use train transport of CO2 to the port of Gdansk for ship transport onwards, and that the Heidelberg pilot project plans to use a rotating packed bed capture which has been tested at Technology Centre Mongstad.

So the CSLF has been around since the earlier days of CCS, a clue being in its name, when there was a debate whether to use the term sequestration or storage. It is considered to have met its mission, which was to “Facilitate the development and deployment of CCS technologies via collaborative efforts that address key technical, economic, and environmental obstacles“, and other CCS initiatives have emerged such as CEM-CCUS and Mission Innovation. It has also provided a meeting place for governments working on CCS or wanting to find out more about CCS. With such international in-person meetings, as well as the meeting content, benefits are also gained from meetings in the margins. IEAGHG has been pleased to have been part of CSLF since the outset. So an acknowledgement should be made to all the good work produced and a thank you to all who have been involved in the CSLF over its twenty years. 

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