Oxy to bring low-carbon tech to Oman’s oilfield sector

Conrad Prabhu –
Muscat, JAN 28 –
Occidental Petroleum — the largest independent producer of oil and gas in the Sultanate — has pledged to introduce pioneering low carbon electricity generation and carbon capture and sequestration technologies that promise to add further value to Enhanced Oil Recovery (EOR) operations and to Oman’s energy sector in general.
Occidental’s President and Chief Executive Officer, Vicki Hollub (pictured), said the technologies will not only support Oxy’s operations in the Sultanate, but will also contribute to Oman Vision 2040 goals.
Addressing the Oman 2040 Vision Conference here yesterday, Hollub said the initiatives, which include a landmark solar power project for its EOR operations in Mukhaizna in Block 53, will help “move Oman further towards a lower carbon energy environment”.
One such technology that Occidental Petroleum aims to introduce into the Sultanate at some point is known as NET Power — a low-cost, natural gas electric power system that generates no atmospheric emissions and inherently captures all carbon dioxide (CO2). Pure CO2 streams generated during the process can be used in EOR operations, said Hollub.
“We at Occidental are the largest CO2 handlers in the world for EOR. Our very large operation of EOR projects in the Permian Basin (in the United States) are generating significant value for our company. We are starting in the Permian Basin to develop a strategy that will take anthropogenic CO2 — which is manmade CO2 from industry — for sequestration in the Permian Basin.”
The beneficial implications of this technology for climate change mitigation are also important, Occidental’s President and CEO pointed out. “So what the world now knows — that it didn’t know before — is that to be able to achieve the 2 degree cap on global warming that the Paris Accord talked about and has an initiative to do that — you must have carbon capture and sequestration that has to be part of the solution. Renewables alone won’t get us there.”
Occidental Petroleum’s expertise in handling and sequestering CO2 in oil reservoirs will create value for the Sultanate, said Hollub. “It enables us to use newer technologies here in Oman that will ultimately create jobs in this sector, but also create the opportunities to use CO2 for EOR. This will increase oil production, and increase revenues for the country, but do it in a lower no-emission kind of environment.”
Another technology developed with Occidental investment concerns the direct CO2 capture process. “This equipment takes air and then separates CO2 out of the air, thus creating another potential source of CO2 for us to lower the CO2 emissions in the atmosphere and use that CO2 for the good of Oman and Oxy, in the creation of jobs and creation of additional oil revenue for the state. We are excited about being able to be doing this things that are unique to Oxy here in Oman.”
Occidental Petroleum, she said, had also recently signed an MoU with GlassPoint Solar for the installation of a 2 GW solar scheme designed to generate about 100,000 barrels per day (bpd) of steam for the company’s Mukhaizna operations.
In concluding, Hollub expressed strong confidence in Oman’s ability to achieve its 2040 Vision objectives. She said: “As a CEO, I have had the opportunity to meet with leaders around the world — both in business and government. One thing I can tell you about — something you already know — is that there is no greater leader in the world than His Majesty Sultan Qaboos. We at Oxy have complete confidence and trust in him and trust in this 2040 Vision; But also knowing our Omani employees the way we do, having worked with them, knowing their character, and knowing what they can do, we have complete trust in all of you as well. Together we can achieve this 2040 Vision.”