China to form alliance to pursue CCS projects in Guangdong

China’s marine technology entity Nanfang Science and Engineering (Zhanjiang Bay Laboratory) has initiated a proposal to form an alliance to pursue carbon capture and storage (CCS) projects in southern China’s Guangdong province.

One of the key projects the alliance has in mind is to pipe CO2 captured from power and chemical operations to offshore fields for storage and for enhanced oil recovery (EOR).

Li Xuesheng, deputy director of Zhanjiang Bay Laboratory, told Upstream that the alliance will comprise partners including China National Offshore Oil Corporation and power utilities such as Datang Leizhou power plant.

The partners will utilise synergies for their first CCS project, which will involve capturing CO2 emitted during power generation in the eastern part of Guangdong province and inject it into reservoirs at the Wushi oilfield in the Beibu Gulf in the South China Sea.

Li, former vice president of CNOOC Zhanjiang in charge of the Wushi development, said the alliance will both utilise its existing pipelines and install new ones to move about 500,000 tonnes per annum of CO2 for injection and another 500,000 tpa for EOR.

The aim is to expand the project in future to store 15 million tonnes of CO2 and boost EOR at other South China Sea fields.

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Datang Leizhou power plant — operated by one of China’s largest power utilities, Datang Group — has two 1-gigawatt capacity units and has been operational since 2020.

Wushi, being developed by CNOOC Zhanjiang along with local oil and gas developer Jiudin Energy and Zhanjiang Infrastructure Construction & Investment Group, is located 20 kilometres east of Wushi township in Guangdong province in water depths of between 14 and 28 metres.

The Wushi development comprises five oil assets: Wushi 17-2, Wushi 16-1, Wushi 16-1W, Wushi 23-5 and Wushi 16-9. CNOOC has discovered almost 100 million cubic metres (approximately 629 million barrels) of oil reserves at the five fields.

The Wushi oil complex development is divided into three phases, with the first phase focusing on Wushi 17-2 involving 21.87 million cubic metres of oil reserves, while, in the second phase, CNOOC will develop fields led by Wushi 23-5.

In the first phase, CNOOC will drill 49 directional wells, with well depths designed to reach 3300 metres.

Production is expected to hit 1.5 million cubic metres per annum, expandable to 2.5 MMcm in the second phase.

The development of the second and third phases will call for construction of two wellhead platforms, one of which is an eight-leg fixed unit (WS16-1W WHPA) with 48 drilling slots. The second platform, WS23-5WHPA, will accommodate 30 drilling slots.

China has just launched commercial operation of the CCS-EOR offshore project at South China Sea’s Enping 15-1 oilfield. This scheme involves capturing up to 300,000 tonnes per annum of CO2 and reinjecting it into a vault in the reservoir. The company aims to store up to 1.46 million tonnes of CO2 over the life of the field.