CO2 Technology Centre Mongstad (TCM) is the world’s largest facility for testing and of improving CO2-capture technologies. The results of these tests will provide an important knowledge base for the development of CO2-capture technologies globally, as well as serve as an important contribution in the combat to solve climate challenges globally. According to the plan, the tests will be launched during first quarter of 2012.
The technology centre at Mongstad is tailor-made for testing a variety of CO2-capture technologies, and there is a great likelihood that operational patterns and testing programs will need to be adjusted along the way. TCM is unique because of its flexibility and its focus on scalability, health and environment. It differs from other facilities because of the chemical components being used; its process design (including the design of the steps for capture); the process integration with two flue gas sources; and the construction method.
The purpose of the TCM facility is to test CO2-capture technology through the capture of CO2 from parts of the flue gases generated at the combined heat and power plant (CHP) and from the refinery at Mongstad. The owners of TCM have initially decided to test two different technologies for CO2-capture. The technologies will be tested and further developed at TCM’s capture facility.. According to the Norwegian Pollution Control Act, TCM is required to submit an emissions permit application to the Norwegian Climate and Pollution Agency (Klif).
Emissions permit application
The construction of the CO2 Technology Centre Mongstad (TCM) is proceeding according to plan, and we expect the tests to start up during the first quarter of 2012. TCM will test and improve technology which will contribute towards cost-effective and safe methods for CO2 capture. The tests conducted shall not have a negative impact on health, environment and safety. The emissions application submitted to the Norwegian Climate and Pollution Agency (Klif), encompasses cleaned discharges of flue gas and CO2, in addition to smaller amounts of chemicals such as amines and ammonia. Klif will as part of their evaluation process send the application through a public hearing process.
The two types of technologies to be tested initially each use different chemicals. Chilled ammonia (carbonate technology) technology will produce ammonia emissions to the air, which will not be at harmful levels. The capture of CO2 through amines will emit some amounts of amines. Some amines degrade upon contact with air and light and form nitrosamines which in large quantities can have a negative impact on health. The emissions from TCM are so low that they will not have any negative impact on health or the environment.
The report from the Norwegian Institute for Air Research (NILU), commissioned by TCM, is included with the emissions application. The NILU report shows that all emissions to air are very low, and below normal intake of nitrosamines. The Norwegian authorities have not defined their own acceptability criteria in this area. To date, there is not enough conclusive research regarding degradation timelines of nitrosamines upon contact with water. In order to determine the extent of this, TCM will engage independent research groups to ensure that this uncertainty is resolved before Klif’s final processing of the emissions application.
Additionaly, TCM operations will not result in any increased noise levels for the surroundings compared to the current noise level at the refinery.
Klif expects that the evaluations of the emissions permit application will take from nine to 12 months. You will find the documents on this Klif webpage.
The operations at the technology centre shall not constitute any health or environmental risk. The research work regarding environmental and health consequences will be carried out in close cooperation with Klif.
TCM aims for full disclosure of future impact on health and the environment. We emphasize the importance of an open dialogue with the local community, the owners of the testing centre, the general public as well as other stakeholders.