Diverting CO2 Emissions from the Atmosphere through Capture and Geologic Sequestration: The Journey So Far!

Offiong I. Akpanika, Joseph O. Etim, Francis D. Udoh


Carbon Dioxide (CO2) emissions accumulating in the earth’s atmosphere as a result of the use of fossil fuels for energy generation are causing an  imbalance in the Earth’s incoming and outgoing radiation. This has led to rising surface air and sub-surface ocean temperatures with impending devastating consequences. Most of the damage observed so far is irreversible and will persist for up to 1000 years even after emissions stop. It is now two decades since March 1992 when about 250 scientists and engineers gathered in Amsterdam for the First International Conference on Carbon Dioxide Reduction (ICCDR-1). The Earth Summit of Rio de Janeiro (1992) also lent impetus to the quest for CO2 emissions reduction through the commitment of various governments to tackle the climate change issue. Of the portfolio of options available, a key means of reducing anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions is to capture carbon dioxide from large stationary sources, compressed either in supercritical form or sub-cooled liquid form, for underground storage. In this paper, we review the feasibility and development of knowledge and technology for CO2 capture and storage (CCS) as well as present current status of global CCS development. In addition, we explore possible characterization of depleted oil and gas fields in the Niger Delta for CO2 sequestration and propose that it is time Nigeria effectively starts a CCS programme especially as a Clean Development Mechanism(CDM) project. Besides earning carbon credits, Nigeria will be attracting increased flow of investment in a capital intensive sector, stimulating transfer of the most innovative technologies available in the power/oil and gas sectors as well as developing infrastructure.

Keywords: Carbon dioxide capture and storage(CCS), geologic sequestration, atmosphere, clean development mechanism(CDM).

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ISSN (Paper)2224-3216 ISSN (Online)2225-0948

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