Maersk, the Danish shipping and energy conglomerate, has signed a memorandum of understanding with Masdar to collaborate on carbon capture.
Maersk Oil hopes to bring its TriGen technology, an unusual form of carbon capture technology that generates water and power in addition to carbon dioxide for injection into oil reservoirs, to the emirate as it evaluates partners who can help it to boost production capacity to 3.5 million barrels per day from 3 million bpd today.
Were Abu Dhabi to build seven such units, it would in theory be able to boost production by 50,000bpd through carbon injection and meet its 7 per cent renewables target.
“The global application is enormous – there are hundreds of sites we’ve identified around the world where we think this makes sense,” said Jon Ferrier, the company’s senior vice president for business development and strategy.
“Ulmately Masdar and Adnoc will be the ones that decide what they want to apply here in the UAE. We want to be part of those discussions.”
Each unit, which has yet to be tested at a commercial scale, would be capable of producing 200 megawatts of power and would also produce distilled water that could be used for industrial or agricultural purposes.
The multi-purpose technology is similar in its output to a shelved joint venture by BP and Masdar to produce carbon dioxide for injection into oilfields at a hydrogen-fuelled power plant.
BP exited the project in 2010 after Masdar and Adnoc failed to come up with a carbon price in time.
A TriGen project would also require aligning multiple stakeholders including oxygen suppliers and electricity buyers.
“It’s a significant evolution of the business model that we’re used to,” said Mr Ferrier.
“So one of the big challegnes that we’re preparing ourselves for is the commercial engineering ofTriGen. You just have to have a total alignment of stakeholders to make sure that you create a bigger pie rather than worry about how it’s divided up.”