World experts visit Saskatchewan’s carbon capture plant
Over 80 people from around the world are visiting Saskatchewan's carbon capture project at the Boundary Dam coal power generating station in Estevan over the next few days.
Over 80 people from around the world are visiting Saskatchewan’s carbon capture project at the Boundary Dam coal power generating station in Estevan over the next few days.
The delegates — from Australia, Asia, Europe and the U.S. — are attending SaskPower’s inaugural Carbon Capture and Storage Information and Planning Symposium.
The $1.24 billion demonstration project is underway to rebuild Unit 3 at the 6-unit coal-fired plant in Estevan, along with an integrated facility nearby to capture and store the carbon emissions from the coal burning process. Coal combustion accounts for 70% of Saskatchewan’s greenhouse gas emissions.
The carbon dioxide emissions from Unit #3 will be processed and compressed into liquid form. From there the liquid will be transported via a carbon steel pipeline to be either stored underground or to be sent to oil fields for enhanced oil recovery. The Boundary Dam facility is the world’s largest post-combustion carbon capture and storage project.
At the conference opening in Regina, SaskPower President and CEO Robert Watson said “SaskPower is building the coal-fired power generation plant of the future. Our carbon capture and storage plant will be capable of reducing CO2 emissions by up to 90 per cent.”
SNC-Lavalin is in charge of constructing the carbon capture facility at the Boundary Dam plant, which is scheduled for completion next April. In a video on SaskPower’s website, Gary Cooper, site construction manager with SNC-Lavalin talks about the challenge of shipping in the massive pieces of equipment required, but says the project is on track. He says that the project is “very important, not just for Saskatchewan but also for the world.”
The Petroleum Technology Research Centre is partnering with SaskPower to manage the “Aquistore Project” at Estevan. This part of the project involves injecting the captured carbon dioxide in a deep saline formation 3.4 kilometres below the surface. The storage site will then be closely monitored and surveyed.
SaskPower is also partnering with Hitachi to build a carbon capture test facility at the Shand Power Station near Estevan. This $60-million project will provide international organizations access to an operating plant for fully testing their carbon capture technologies. Hitachi will test its own amine technology at the plant first, but it is being built to accommodate a range of configurations.