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IEA Greenhouse Gas R&D Programme

67 samThe second annual ECO2 meeting was hosted by the University of Bergen in Norway, from the 13th to 16th May 2013 and was attended by 90 experts, all interested in an update on the project progress to date and next steps. Representatives from the 27 organisations involved in the ECO2 consortium attended the meeting, along with those from additional organisations involved within the Scientific Advisory Board (SAB) and Stakeholder Dialogue Board (SDB). IEAGHG are involved in the SDB, the main role of which is to act as the project's stakeholder sounding board, providing general comments and specific advice where necessary.

The ECO2 project is a 4 year undertaking that began in 2011 and is a Collaborative Project funded under the European Commission's Seventh Framework Programme. It aims to assess the risks associated with the storage of carbon dioxide (CO2) in offshore environments (so below the seabed). Little is known about the short-term and long-term impacts of CO2 storage on marine ecosystems and the ECO2 project will assess the likelihood and impacts of leakage on such ecosystems. The objectives of the project include investigating the likelihood of leakage from sub-seabed storage sites; to study the potential effects of leakage on marine ecosystems; to assess the risks of sub-seabed CO2 storage; to develop a comprehensive monitoring strategy; and to define guidelines for the best environmental practices in implementation and management of sub-seabed CO2 storage sites.

The project is split into 7 work packages (WPs): integrity of the sedimentary cover; fluid and gas flux across the seabed; fate of emitted CO2; impact of leakage on ecosystems; risk assessment, economic and legal studies; public perception; and coordination and data management. The first four work packages form the scientific core of ECO2, with the latter three uses these studies to assess, analyse and disseminate the findings. The work packages are cross-cut with four themes (the 'cross-cutting themes', or CCTs) to support and strengthen the information flow between packages, providing products by integrating and evaluating the outcomes of the work packages. CCT1 will provide a comprehensive monitoring strategy (using contributions from WPs 1 – 4); CCT2 will integrate the various numerical models developed (WPs 1 – 5); CCT3 will foster international cooperation; and CCT4 will define guidelines for environmental best practices (drawing information from all work packages and cross-cutting themes).

For more information on the ECO2 project, please visit