If there's anyone who's excited about the advancements in research for carbon capture and storage, it's CEO for the Petroleum Technology Research Centre, Dan Maclean.

Maclean spoke yesterday at a Weyburn Chamber of Commerce event. In his presentation, he discussed a number of areas of study overseen by the PTRC. One topic included Aquistore.

He presented an optimistic long view for oil and gas, explaining the Aquistore technology.

“It's a slipstream of the CO2 that's being captured from Boundary Dam,” said Maclean. “Most of that CO2 from Boundary Dam goes to Weyburn. Ideally, I would like it all to go to Weyburn, to increase oil recovery and be stored at Weyburn.”

However, Weyburn can’t take it all.

“So Aquistore takes what {Weyburn} can't, and we put it down into this deep reservoir three and a half kilometres underground,” he said. “Our mandate is to understand how that saline moves in that reservoir, and more importantly, will it stay there, and will it stay there forever?”

According to Maclean, Aquistore is well-monitored for safety and public assurance.

“We are monitoring what's going on down in the reservoir, we're monitoring everything on the surface, too,” he said. “The objective on the surface is always to have zero. but we are using the latest and greatest technology.”

He noted the Aquistore in Estevan is also studied by a research consortium coming from various places including St. Francis Xavier University in Nova Scotia, as well as universities from the U.K. and the U.S.A.

Maclean said they can determine if the storage is being contained by using a permanent 3-d array.

“We can shoot 3-d seismic every year, and we can watch how the CO2 moves through that reservoir,” he explained. “At the same time, we have some of the most incredible state-of-the-art monitoring stuff on the surface for water and for air, and some of the smartest people around the country and around the world looking at this.”

He noted the PTRC and the consortium are defining the whole space all for giving the public confidence that we can apply a carbon capture technology and we can store the CO2.

“So, I look at this as, any country that is involved in coal-fire power generation, if they can afford to put in carbon capture, (and why wouldn't you?), you can take 95 percent out of your emissions and you can store it safely in the ground,” he said.

The PTRC is a not-for-profit founded in 1998 by the Government of Canada and the Government of Saskatchewan operating as a collaborative partnership with industry, government, and research organizations.

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