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Wyo. seeks coordinated pipeline to carry CO2 to oil fields
Date:14 May 2012
Accessibility:Subscription only, paid
Wyoming's governor has proposed a dedicated statewide pipeline corridor to transport carbon dioxide to aging oil fields, hoping to make it easier for industry to use enhanced oil recovery to tap the state's resources. Gov. Matt Mead (R) last week pitched the idea that the Bureau of Land Management preapprove a corridor for carbon dioxide pipelines in the state to reduce the number of hoops companies have to jump through to get permits. Mead's target is the estimated 1.7 million barrels of oil that could be recovered from aging fields when the price of oil is at $100 per barrel and the price of CO2 is at $2.50 per million cubic feet, according to a calculation by the Wyoming Pipeline Authority and the University of Wyoming. The Wyoming proposal comes at a time of increased interest by the U.S. Department of Energy and environmental groups in carbon capture, utilization and sequestration (CCUS), the rebranding of the now-unpopular carbon capture and storage (CCS) idea from a few years ago.
Enhanced oil recovery has also received interest from industry in Wyoming, especially by Texas-based Denbury Resources Inc., which has moved aggressively to gain access to CO2 sources in the nation. The technique involves pumping CO2 into a reservoir, where the gas interacts with the crude oil and causes it to flow out of the well.