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As of September 30, 2016, the Carbon Capture and Sequestration Technologies program at MIT has closed. The website is being kept online as a reference but will not be updated.

Longyearbyen Project Fact Sheet: Carbon Dioxide Capture and Storage Project

Company/Alliance: UNIS CO2 Lab-AS

Location: Norway

Feedstock: Coal

Size: N/A

Capture Technology: Post-combustion

CO2 Fate: Onshore storage in saline aquifer at 700 m depth

Timing: ON HOLD.

Start (2016)


Comments: This is part of a four phase project to demonstrate the entire CCS chain from coal production through coal-combusting power production including carbon capture to the storage of CO2 in a subsurface Reservoir.

Phase 1: Identify the reservoir.

Phase 2: Injectivity tests of reservoir: The tentative CO2 injection site (near the old Aurora Station, 5,7 km from the power plant in Longyearbyen) targets a suitable sandstone reservoir at 700-1000 m depth; the De Geerdal Formation of upper Triassic age. Phase 2 report

Phase 3 and 4: Construct a new power plant capture unit in Longyearbyen and capture and sequester all of the carbon emissions. The plant currently burns between 25,000 and 30,000 tonnes of coal every year to heat and power the city of roughly 2,000 inhabitants.

In phase 3 the plan was to inject CO2 as a pilot and feasibility study minor volumes of CO2 was planned to be captured from the local coal power plant. To get small volumes (i.e. 10000metric ton); it would require some minor reconstruction or rebuilding of the power plant. Unfortunately this has been turned down both from the national and local authorities both of whom are currently negative towards CCS in Longyearbyen. That means the capture part of the project is now on hold.  

However the R&D has been mainly on injection and storage of buoyant fluids. This research (subsurface Geology and Geophysics  R&D) is still going on and especially focusing on the risk of storage – injective rates and leakage.

Project Link: Longyearbyen project web page

Other Sources and Press Release:

While Obama Moves to Curb Carbon Emissions, Svalbard Prepares to Capture Them (June 2013)
CO2 Storage in Svalbard- reservoir characteristics with implications for modelling CO2 behavior(2009)