Effective enforcement of underground storage of carbon dioxide

Organisation: HWL Ebsworth Lawyers

The perception of an effective enforcement regime that ensures the secure and safe storage of CO2 in underground geologic formations will be crucial in increasing public and industry confidence in carbon capture and storage (CCS) as a viable low-carbon technology.

An effective enforcement regime for underground storage of CO2 has the following key features:

  • Comprehensive obligations that address the key risks of underground storage of CO2
  • Comprehensive monitoring and verification (M&V) requirements, including baseline monitoring, M&V obligations during the injection phase and M&V obligations post-injection
  • Enforcement mechanisms that are risk-based, layered and flexible, grounded in science and fact-based decision-making, and include the ability to deal with 'serious situations' (such as unintended releases and CO2 not behaving as predicted)
  • A clear allocation of roles and responsibilities for enforcement.

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