Significant progress achieved on early-stage work for oil sands carbon capture and storage network
CALGARY – Oct. 14, 2022 – The Pathways Alliance, representing Canada’s six largest oil sands companies, is advancing early work necessary to build one of the world’s largest carbon capture and storage (CCS) facilities in the oil sands region of northern Alberta.
The CCS project is the primary focus of phase one of Pathways Alliance’s ambitious plan to reduce annual emissions from oil sands operations by 22 million tonnes by 2030 and achieve a goal of net-zero emissions by 2050.
“A CCS project of this size is a huge undertaking that requires significant up-front work and a strong partnership between industry and government to proceed,” said Kendall Dilling, president of Pathways Alliance.
“We continue to work with the federal and Alberta governments to ensure Canada’s co-funding programs and regulatory environment for CCS are globally competitive and that emissions reduction targets for our industry are realistic and achievable.
“At the same time, we are in the early stages of engagement with communities on how best we can move forward together on our plan.
“In parallel, we’re progressing work to make sure we’re ready to make an investment decision and start building as soon as the necessary financial and regulatory conditions are in place.”
The first stage of the Pathways Alliance plan includes approximately $16.5 billion of investment by 2030 on the Alliance’s foundational CCS project and $7.6 billion on other emissions reductions projects, for a total of around $24.1 billion.
This follows billions of dollars already invested by member companies to reduce overall emissions per barrel by 22% in the last decade alone.
Pre-work on the Pathways Alliance foundational CCS project to date:
- Early engagement with more than 20 Indigenous communities along the proposed CO2 transportation and storage network corridor and a commitment to meaningful engagement throughout the full cycle of the network’s operations.
- Selected by the Government of Alberta to continue exploratory work on the Alliance’s ambitious CCS hub to safely and permanently store CO2 captured from 20+ oil sands facilities and other interested industries in northern Alberta.
- More detailed work to evaluate the storage zone will soon begin.
- The proposed hub could eventually see more than 1.1 billion tonnes of CO2 safely stored deep underground in a saline aquifer – a critical lever in enabling the Alliance’s goal of net zero by 2050.
- Conducting engineering studies for the phase 1 CO2 capture facilities.
- Nine carbon capture feasibility studies involving member companies have been completed on oil sands sites, with engineering work advancing.
- Completed pre-engineering work on the 400-kilometre pipeline that will carry captured CO2 to the storage hub; more detailed engineering work is about to begin.
- Environmental field programs are underway to support regulatory application submissions for the proposed CO2 transportation line and storage network. The Alliance is planning to submit those applications in late Q4 of 2023.
This and other work are underway by more than 200 engineers, scientists, and experts from Pathways Alliance companies to advance technologies to achieve the goal of net zero.
Canadians can learn more about Pathways Alliance’s plan and its unprecedented level of collaboration to develop and deploy technologies to reduce emissions by visiting https://pathwaysalliance.ca/cleartheair
Cautionary Statement: Statements of future events or conditions in this press release, including projections, targets, expectations, estimates, and business plans are forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements can be identified by words such as achieve, aspiration, believe, anticipate, intend, propose, plan, goal, seek, project, predict, target, estimate, expect, forecast, vision, strategy, outlook, schedule, future, continue, likely, may, should, will and/or similar references to outcomes in future periods. Forward-looking statements in this press release include, but are not limited to, references to the viability, timing and impact of the net zero plan and the development of pathways in support of a net-zero future; support for the pathways from the Government of Alberta and the Government of Canada; the ability to enable net zero emissions from oil production and preserve economic contribution from the industry; the deployment of technologies to reduce GHG emissions; the ability to create jobs, accelerate development of the clean tech sector, provide benefits for other sectors and help maintain Canadians’ quality of life; and making economic investments to ensure a successful transition to a net zero world and delivering long term value to shareholders. All net-zero references in this announcement apply to emissions from oil sands operations (defined as scope 1 and scope 2 emissions).
Forward-looking statements are based on current expectations, estimates, projections and assumptions at the time the statements are made. Actual future results, including expectations and assumptions concerning: demand growth and energy source, supply and mix; amount and timing of emissions reductions; the adoption and impact of new facilities or technologies, including on reductions to GHG emissions; project plans, timing, costs, technical evaluations and capacities, and the ability to effectively execute on these plans and operate assets; that any required support for the pathways from the Government of Alberta and the Government of Canada will be provided; applicable laws and government policies, including climate change and restrictions in response to COVID-19; production rates, growth and mix; general market conditions; and capital and environmental expenditures, could differ materially depending on a number of factors. These factors include global, regional or local changes in supply and demand for oil, natural gas, and petroleum and petrochemical products and the resulting price, differential and margin impacts; political or regulatory events, including changes in law or government policy and actions in response to COVID-19; the receipt, in a timely manner, of regulatory and third-party approvals including for new technologies; lack of required support from the Government of Alberta and the Government of Canada; environmental risks inherent in oil and gas exploration and production activities; environmental regulation, including climate change and GHG regulation and changes to such regulation; availability and allocation of capital; availability and performance of third-party service providers; unanticipated technical or operational difficulties; project management and schedules and timely completion of projects; reservoir analysis and performance; unexpected technological developments; the results of research programs and new technologies, and ability to bring new technologies to commercial scale on a cost-competitive basis; operational hazards and risks; general economic conditions, including the occurrence and duration of economic recessions; and other factors referenced by the companies’ in their most recent respective annual reports and management’s discussion and analysis, as applicable.
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