Integrated Carbon Capture Utilization and Storage (CCUS)

Building an Integrated Initiative

There is unprecedented interest in carbon capture, utilization and storage (CCUS), carbon management, negative emissions and deep decarbonization worldwide. The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine have identified carbon sequestration as one of society’s grand challenges, and multiple national labs and the U.S. Department of Energy have significant ongoing work in the area. The need for detailed scientific and engineering research, coupled with cross-cutting work on policy, markets and regulation is critical.

Colorado School of Mines is a top technical research university in areas related to energy, natural resources and environment. A public university with a strong emphasis on applied research and educating students to help lead the energy transition, Mines is actively engaged in areas related to one or more aspects of the CCUS chain and faculty provide relevant expertise that spans from fundamental chemistry to reactor engineering and cultivate a collaborative working environment across disciplines.

Areas of CCUS Research at Mines

Geologic reservoir characterization and storage

  • Fluid Rock interactions to evaluate carbon mineralization
  • Geochemical indicators of CO2 leakage
  • Geophysical quantification of CO2 in place
  • CO2 storage capacity in the seal and reservoir formations
  • CO2 leakage into the seal formation

Capture

• Capture membranes
• Chemical looping

Utilization

  • Upgrade captured CO2 to commodity chemicals
  • CO2 to fuels
  • EOR

Capture Policy and economics

  • Carbon Pricing
  • Industry CCUS policy
  • Regulatory approaches to CCUS
  • Data analytics for characterizing successful CCUS projects

Integrated CCUS NEWS

America’s Zero-Carbon Action Plan (ZCAP) 10/23/2020

America’s Zero-Carbon Action Plan (ZCAP)

Payne Institute Director Morgan Bazilian is co-chair with Fellow David Victor of the Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN) ZCAP power sector chapter.  The ZCAP transition to a low-carbon future centers on four core elements: technological change, federalism, foreign policy, and industrial policy. The Plan is based on regulations and market incentives to promote high-speed innovation and rapid adoption of zero-emission technologies.  October 23, 2020.

Regulation to play a key role in India’s gas ambitions 10/15/2020

Regulation to play a key role in India’s gas ambitions

Payne Institute Senior Research Associate Greer Gosnell and Payne Faculty Fellow Ian Lange write about how India’s government has in recent months reaffirmed its commitment to the development of an expanded domestic gas grid and cross-border interconnections such as the long-mooted Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India pipeline. But the experience of the US gas market suggests that smart and considered government gas transport regulation could play as crucial a role in boosting Indian gas demand as simply increasing pipeline capacity.  October 15, 2020.

REFRESHING GLOBAL ENERGY SECURITY POLICY AND INFRASTRUCTURE FOR THE ENERGY TRANSITION 10/6/2020

REFRESHING GLOBAL ENERGY SECURITY POLICY AND INFRASTRUCTURE FOR THE ENERGY TRANSITION

Payne Institute Director Morgan Bazilian was a collaborator on the T20 Saudi Arabia 2020 THINK policy briefing Refreshing Global Energy Security Policy and the Infrastructure for the Energy Transition for the G20.  The Group of 20 (G20) members have discussed energy security for many years, and now have an opportunity to modernize and redefine global, regional, and national energy security frameworks to align with the transition to a lower-carbon energy system. Member countries should take steps to ensure that emerging vulnerabilities stemming from the rapid growth of new energy forms can be understood and managed both collectively and within their specific contexts. As all energy sectors transition, collective efforts toward energy security can progress by (i) developing a timely, transparent, and objective approach to data gathering and dissemination for the production, consumption, and trade of new energy forms and key mineral inputs; (ii) establishing an expert international advisory panel to the G20 on the topic of energy security in the context of energy transitions; and (iii) launching an effort on forward-looking energy security policy.  October 6, 2020. 

Strategic Intelligence – Mining and Metals 9/23/2020

Strategic Intelligence – Mining and Metals

Payne Institute Senior Research Associate Jordy Lee has documented the paradigm shift in the mining and metals industry, as it incorporates greater sustainability, absorbs technical innovation from other sectors, and seeks a way forward in the midst of a pandemic. By focussing on modernization, digitalization, and transparency, the industry can strengthen its foundational role in a rapidly evolving global economy. However, effectively managing related changes will require greater adaptability, transformative thinking, and building stronger relationships in a global context.  September 23, 2020. 

11 WAYS TO MEASURE CLEAN GROWTH 9/22/2020

11 WAYS TO MEASURE CLEAN GROWTH

Payne Institute Senior Research Associate Sara Hastings-Simon contributes to this report from the Canadian Institute for Climate Choices that highlights the multiple facets of clean growth by unpacking the connections between economic growth, climate change, and human well-being. We identify 11 data-driven indicators that, together, can guide efforts by governments, businesses, and communities to not only tackle climate change but to do so in a way that achieves sustained growth and the best overall outcomes for people and society as a whole.  September 22, 2020.  

Colorado School of Mines launches Integrated Carbon Capture, Utilization and Storage Initiative 9/18/2020

Colorado School of Mines launches Integrated Carbon Capture, Utilization and Storage Initiative

Led by the Payne Institute for Public Policy and the Mines’ Office of Global Initiatives, the Integrated CCUS initiative will be interdisciplinary across Mines departments.  Global interest in carbon capture, utilization and storage is unprecedented as one of the key strategies for addressing climate change. The need for detailed scientific and engineering research, coupled with cross-cutting work on policy, markets and regulation of the technology is equally critical.  September 18, 2020.

BP Releases Energy Outlook 9/14/2020

BP Releases Energy Outlook

Payne Institute Fellow Michael Cohen, Chief U.S. Economist and Head of Oil Analysis at BP, produced the Energy Outlook that explores the forces shaping the global energy transition out to 2050 and the key uncertainties surrounding that transition. The global energy system is likely to undergo a fundamental restructuring in order to decarbonize, which will create challenges and opportunities for the industry. Three main scenarios – Rapid, Net Zero, and Business-as-usual – provide a range of possible outcomes to understand the range of uncertainties ahead.  September 14, 2020. 

Why Canada’s geothermal industry is finally gaining ground 9/12/2020

Why Canada’s geothermal industry is finally gaining ground

Payne Institute Senior Research Associate Sara Hastings-Simon contributes to this article about how the heat from below the Earth’s surface has provided a reliable source of electricity for decades in many countries — but not Canada. Now, several projects underway in western provinces could herald a new era for this untapped resource and offer job opportunities for former oil and gas workers.  September 12, 2020.  

Beware of climate delay, masquerading as climate action 9/10/2020

Beware of climate delay, masquerading as climate action

Payne Institute Senior Research Associate Sara Hastings-Simon writes an opinion piece about the slow-walking action on climate has almost the same impact as outright denial.  As political leaders face growing calls for climate action, we must be careful to understand where investments in technological development are, in fact, a form of climate delay, masquerading as action.  September 10, 2020.

Country Spotlight: Gas Flaring in India 9/3/2020

Country Spotlight: Gas Flaring in India

The Payne Institute looks at the gas flaring in India.  According to the IEA, India is the fourth largest refiner of oil (behind the US, Russia, and China), and the third largest importer of crude oil and LNG (behind China and the US), though is outranked by 24 other countries on oil production, with declining trends.  September 3, 2020. 

Bouncing Forward Sustainably: Pathways to a post-COVID World Sustainable Energy 8/31/2020

Bouncing Forward Sustainably: Pathways to a post-COVID World Sustainable Energy

Payne Institute Director Morgan Bazilian was a co-author on the Second Consultative Science Platform of the IIASA-ISC “Bouncing Forward Sustainably: Pathways to a post-COVID-19 World” that aims to harness the transformative power of crisis to imagine a more sustainable world. The authors gathered with a focus on science -to deliberate on the following overarching questions: How should COVID-19 and related stimulus and/or recovery packages be directed to build back better to create the maximum impact on the  transition to sustainable development; and how can a decarbonized, decentralized, and digitalized energy system make our society more resilient? How can the ability of science, policy and governance systems be enhanced to rapidly respond to unforeseen shocks? August 31, 2020.

The oil-sands fundamentals are dire and stark – and Canada shouldn’t spend to revive a dying dream 8/29/2020

The oil-sands fundamentals are dire and stark – and Canada shouldn’t spend to revive a dying dream

Payne Institute Senior Research Associate Sara Hastings-Simon, David Keith, and Ed Whittingham write an opinion piece on Alberta’s potential move to build a greener industry with a major public investment in decarbonizing oil production. There is widespread support for this approach. After all, many of Alberta’s oil producers are in the high-cost, high-carbon quadrant, and for them to follow the world in moving to low-carbon energy, the public needs to help with the Herculean adjustment effort. August 29, 2020. 

Can Distributed Nuclear Power Address Energy Resilience and Energy Poverty? 8/19/2020

Can Distributed Nuclear Power Address Energy Resilience and Energy Poverty?

Payne Institute Fellow Alex Gilbert and Morgan Bazilian write about the three major energy challenges that are driving national and international energy decision making. First, the need to mitigate and adapt to climate change. Second, despite recent progress, many communities in both developed and developing countries remain in energy poverty or lack reliable, low-cost energy services. Finally, due to climate-amplified natural disasters and other threats, the reliability and resilience of energy systems is an increasing public concern. Existing distributed energy resources (DERs), especially solar photovoltaics and battery storage, are attempting to address each of these issues. However, more and faster progress is needed. Recent innovations in advanced nuclear designs could make nuclear power a distributed energy solution for the first time. As a dispatchable and resilient energy source, distributed nuclear could complement and accelerate the ongoing distributed energy revolution.  August 19, 2020.

Market failures and willingness-to-accept the smart energy transition: Experimental evidence from the UK 8/13/2020

MARKET FAILURES AND WILLINGNESS-TO-ACCEPT THE SMART ENERGY TRANSITION: EXPERIMENTAL EVIDENCE FROM THE UK

Payne Institute Senior Research Associate Greer Gosnell and Daire McCoy have a new working paper that discusses why there is a need to facilitate the sustainable energy transition, and how governments and innovators are encouraging households to adopt smart technologies that allow for increased flexibility in energy grids. The UK’s ambitious smart metering policy has indisputably failed to achieve its objective of equipping all dwellings with smart meters. This research uses a novel experiment to elicit the willingness-to-accept of 2,400 nationally representative UK households for smart meter installation.  August 13, 2020.  

MEET THE INTEGRATED CCUS RESEARCHERS

Linda Battalora
Teaching Professor, Petroleum Engineering

Nanette Boyle
Assistant Professor
Coors Developmental Chair
Chemical and Biological Engineering

John Bradford
Professor of Geophysics
Vice President for Global Initiatives

Robert Braun
Rowlinson Professor of Mechanical Engineering

Jared Carbone
Associate Professor, Economics and Business

Moises Carreon
Professor, Chemical and Biological Engineering

Tzahi Y. Cath
Ben L. Fryrear Professor 
Civil and Environmental Engineering

Ben Gilbert
Assistant Professor, Economics and Business

Marte Gutierrez
James R. Paden Chair and Distinguished Professor, Civil and Environmental Engineering
Director, University Transportation Center for Underground Transportation Infrastructure (UTC-UTI)

Canan Karakaya
Research Assistant Professor, Mechanical Engineering

Robert Kee
George R. Brown Distinguished Professor, Mechanical Engineering

Carolyn Koh
William K. Coors Distinguished Chair and Professor
Chemical and Biological Engineering

Ian Lange
Assistant Professor, Economics and Business

Yaoguo Li
Professor, Geophysics
Director, Center for Gravity, Electrical and Magnetic Studies

Shannon Davies Mancus
Teaching Associate Professor, Humanities, Arts & Social Sciences

Peter Maniloff
Assistant Professor, Economics and Business

Mike McGuirk
Assistant Professor, Department of Chemistry

Junko Munakata Marr
Interim Department Head and Professor
Civil and Environmental Engineering

Priscilla Nelson
Professor, Mining Engineering

Ryan O’Hayre
Professor, Metallurgical and Materials Engineering

Matthew Posewitz
Professor, Department of Chemistry

Manika Prasad
Professor, Geophysics

Svitlana Pylypenko
Assistant Professor, Department of Chemistry

Ryan Richards
Professor, Department of Chemistry
Director, Joint Mines/NREL Nexus Center

Laura Singer
Senior Research Associate, Payne Institute for Public Policy

Alexis Navarre-Sitchler
Associate Professor, Geology and Geological Engineering

Steven Smith
Assistant Professor, Economics and Business

Stephen Sonnenberg
Professor, Geology and Geological Engineering
Charles Boettcher Distinguished Chair in Petroleum Geology

Timothy Strathmann
Interim Associate Department Head and Professor
Civil and Environmental Engineering

Neal Sullivan
Associate Professor, Mechanical Engineering

Ali Tura
Professor, Geophysics
Director, Reservoir Characterization Project

Colin Wolden
Professor, Chemical and Biological Engineering

Yu-Shu Wu
Professor, Petroleum Engineering
Energi Simulation Chair

For more information about the Integrated Carbon Capture Utilization and Storage (CCUS) Initiative at the Colorado School of Mines, please contact the Payne Institute for Public Policy Senior Research Associate, Laura Singer, at lsinger@mines.edu, Colorado School of Mines Vice President for Global Initiatives, John Bradford, at jbradford@mines.edu, or Colorado School of Mines Professor of Geophysics, Manika Prasad, at mprasad@mines.edu.