Professor Peter J Cook, an Australian expert on carbon capture and storage (CCS), will join the team working to develop the huge PEP-11 gas field in the Offshore Sydney Basin, stakeholder BPH Energy (ASX: BPH) has announced.
BPH owns almost 23% of Advent Energy, the unlisted oil and gas company based in Perth, which, in turn, holds an 85% interest in PEP 11, with Bounty Oil and Gas (ASX: BUY) owning the remaining stake.
PEP 11 covers 4,576 square kilometres.
In September, BPH presented a carbon capture plan for a third of Australia’s greenhouse gas emissions using the planned Baleen gas drilling program in the offshore Sydney Basin.
Advent has now appointed Prof Cook as an advisor on the geosequestration — the geological storage of carbon dioxide — for this project.
The Baleen prospect, located about 30km south of Newcastle off the NSW Coast, offers significant potential environmental benefits in CCS for the greater Sydney-Newcastle area, BPH has said previously.
Prof Cook has published more than 30 papers on greenhouse gas technologies, including two books, and was a co-ordinating lead author for the Geneva-based Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.
Identified carbon capture potential 20 years ago
Prof Cook first drew attention 20 years ago to Australia’s CCS opportunities.
He then went on to establish national CCS programs and research facilities, with the University of Melbourne in 2011 opening the Peter Cook Centre for CCS Research.
He has held many positions among organisations in the United Kingdom, Australia, France and the US, including with the British Geological Society.
A 2005 research report by Geoscience Australia, “New South Wales-Deep Saline Aquifer Storage Potential”, found that 2 trillion cubic feet of carbon dioxide storage might be feasible in the offshore Sydney Basin.
Baleen is a prime target in the exploration of the large PEP 11 oil and gas permit area.
PEP 11 has been pursued since 1981 when the first 2D seismic survey was carried out. That work showed the project area has similarities to the conventional gas fields of the Bowen Basin in Queensland, with a similar age and depth. The Bowen Basin fields have interbedded coal and gas sands of the Late Permian period corresponding to PEP 11.
Carbon capture can be 90% efficient
BPH has said CCS is an integrated technology that is well-proven and established and can be 90% efficient when deployed.
BPH views PEP 11 as one of the most significant untested gas plays in Australia. It is adjacent to the Sydney-Newcastle area, the largest domestic gas market in Australia.
The Sydney Basin is a major contributor to Australia’s greenhouse gas emissions, BPH has noted.
That basin region contains the largest number of carbon dioxide emission sources in Australia in Australia, including oil refineries, coke ovens and power stations.