WINNIPEG, Man., Nov. 2 (Reuters) – Canadian company Pembina Pipeline Corp is asking supporters of two competing carbon capture center proposals in the oil-producing province of Alberta to combine their efforts with its own plan, said Tuesday the general manager of the company.
Pembina (PPL.TO) and TC Energy Corp (TRP.TO) said in June that they were looking to develop a carbon transport and sequestration system. The Government of Alberta, which controls the underground space for carbon burial, issued a call for expressions of interest this fall.
Carbon capture facilities are expected to be a key part of global efforts to contain emissions from fossil fuel production. Canada is the world’s fourth largest producer of oil and aims to reduce national greenhouse gas emissions by at least 40% by 2030.
The Pembina-TC plan, called the Alberta Carbon Grid, faces competition from at least two others – Oil Sands Pathways, presented by the largest oil sands producers, and Polaris, a proposal from Royal Dutch Shell (RDSa.L ).
Pembina has discussed with the two groups the possibility of meeting and talks remain active, CEO Mick Dilger told Reuters.
“One big, large-scale carbon capture program is by far the most sensible way to do things,” Dilger said. “If everyone works together, we will find a more cost effective solution.”
Whether such cooperation will happen remains to be seen, Dilger said.
Pembina and TC are expected to convince Shell and the Pathways partnership of Canadian Natural Resources (CNQ.TO), Cenovus Energy (CVE.TO), Imperial Oil (IMO.TO), Suncor Energy (SU.TO) and MEG Energy (MEG .TO) ), a change of concept, he said.
Pembina and TC have come up with a plan that would use the alternate pipelines they own to reduce costs. The other proposals rely more on new infrastructure, Dilger said.
There is also the unknown of how Alberta will allocate space for carbon sequestration, Dilger said, adding that the provincial government is “re-evaluating how it could be done.”
Rival companies and the Alberta government could not be reached for comment.
Pembina and TC chose a reservoir in Fort Saskatchewan, an industrial hub near Edmonton, and not far from where Shell offers its own carbon sequestration site. Pathways is offering a storage facility at Cold Lake in the oil sands.
Pembina and TC say the first phase of their plan could work by 2025.
“Normally we like to do things on our own because they’re simpler,” Dilger said. “But carbon capture is something the sector can and should do in cooperation with the government. We would like to get together.”
Reporting by Rod Nickel in Winnipeg; edited by John Stonestreet and Richard Pullin
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