Boundary Dam integrated CCS project
This Canadian, $1,24 billion (of which 600 million is for CCS and the rest is for modernizing the plant) integrated carbon capture & storage project is retrofitting SaskPower's coal-fired Boundary Dam Power Station in Estevan, Saskatchewan with a carbon capture system. Captured CO2 will be used for enhanced oil recovery and stored in deep saline aquifers. This could be the first commercial-scale project in the world combining post-combustion CCS with coal-fired power generation.
The provincial government approved the proposals in April 2011, which cleared the way for construction to begin immediately with a target start-up date of early 2014.
The majority of the captured gas will be sold to operator Cenovus for enhanced oil recovery at its Weyburn oilfield. In December 2012, SaskPower announced that a deal had been reached for the purchase of Boundary Dam CO2. Cenovus wil set up injection wells and build a 40 mile-long pipeline connecting Weyburn with Boundary Dam. SaskPower and PTRC hope to soon secure a deal to store CO2 from the facility's hot test in late 2013 at PTRC's Aquistore CO2 storage project.
The retrofitted capture plant will capture 1 million tonnes per year of CO2 - or 95% - from one of Boundary Dam’s aging combustion units, which has a generating capacity of around 130MW. The total amount of CO2 produced, for all generating units at Boundary Dam Power station, is 5.5 to 6 million tonnes annually.
The venture is a partnership between the Canadian government, the province of Saskatchewan and facility owner SaskPower. Saskatchewan has a 300-year supply of coal and is keen to fast-track the development of clean coal technologies.
In July 2011, SaskPower placed a $30 million contract with Stantec for engineering consultancy during the design and construction of the system. The engineering firm has established its CCS Centre of Excellence in nearby Regina as a result of its involvement in the project.
SNC Lavalin and Cansolv Technologies Limited - a subsidiary of Shell - were selected in March 2010 to oversee EPC activities. Cansolv will test its own pioneering amine-based carbon capture process (CANSOLV), while SNC Lavelin are the general building contractors. Hitachi is supplying a state-of-the-art steam turbine designed to integrate a coal-fired power plant with carbon capture technology.
In late 2010, SaskPower gave a clear commitment to the project with its decision to rebuild the Unit 3 boiler at Boundary Dam. In January 2011, Babcock & Wilcox were contracted to carry out the work, which will extend its lifespan by 30 years and ensure it can operate with the planned state-of-the-art carbon capture system.
A $5.2 million, pre-commercial-scale chemical absorption technology demonstration pilot plant has already been operating at Boundary Dam as part of the International Test Centre for CO2 Capture. The pilot was run by the University of Regina who leased the equipment from SaskPower. The University operated the facility, did the research, and owned it. In the summer of 2012, this facility was shut-down.
In October 2013, SaskPower signed an agreement with the Japanese firm Chugai Technos to deliver a monitoring system for the storage part. The system will measure CO2 in the ground and provide a ground leakage monitoring system. There were also reports that the projects was running CAD 115 million over budget, but it is important to note that this was for renovating the existing plant and not the CCS project itself.
SaskPower aims to use the results of this project to decide on using CCS at its other coal-fired power plants, as well as share its experience with other CCS developers worldwide, through a knowledge-sharing consortium – the SaskPower CCS Global Consortium - that will commence in 2013.
In April 2014, SaskPower signed an agreement with the Swedish power company Vattenfall. This is not a financial agreement, but the companies will be sharing technical information and expertise and keeping each other abreast of any new developments they find around the health, safety, and environmental impacts of the technology.
Carbon Capture Test Facility
SaskPower and Hitachi teamed up in March 2012 to construct a $60 million carbon capture test facility at SaskPower’s Shand Power Station in southeastern Saskatchewan. Each was to contribute about $30 million to the facility, with SaskPower acting as owner/operator. Construction will begin in 2013, with a scheduled completion date of summer 2014. Hitachi’s proprietary amine technology will be the first technology tested with other developers to follow in 2014.
The Canadian government has invested $240 million in the $1.24 billion demonstration project, with the remainder coming from SaskPower, which made a final investment decision in April 2011. The venture is currently finalising terms with a CO2 off-taker and is confident of securing buyers for its captured CO2, SO2, and fly-ash by products.
The project continues to make steady progress. The provincial government approved the proposals in April 2011, clearing the way for construction to begin immediately. A hot test of the facility is planned for the end of 2013, with full operations originally expected to begin at the end of the first quarter of 2014. In September 2012, it was reported that the capture unit was two thirds complete, and was expected to be finished by March 2014. SaskPower reported some delays in early 2014, and full operations are expected to commence in summer or fall 2014.
More information and press releases
SaskPower CEO says ICCS project $115M over budget, October 23, 2013
Captured CO2 from the Boundary Dam facility will be stored just two kilometres away as part of the Petroleum Research Centre's (PTCR) Aquistore project - which aims to demonstrate safe long-term storage of CO2, three kilometres underground in a saline reservoir. Aquistore builds on knowledge developed through PTRC’s ten-year management of the IEA GHG Weyburn-Midale CO2 Monitoring and Storage Project. SaskPower also intends to provide CO2 volumes for use in EOR projects.