Masdar selects site for Abu Dhabi carbon-capture facility

Two shortlisted sites – one industrial, the other oil-related – were submitted to the Supreme Petroleum Council earlier this year following an eight-month feasibility study by Canada’s SNC Lavalin.

Masdar has received permission to start engineering work at one of the sites.

“We have made the choice on the final location, and FEED [front-end engineering and design] is due to start next month,” Sultan al-Jaber, chief executive officer of Masdar, told MEED on the sidelines of a UAE-China economic forum in Shanghai on 2 April.

Al-Jaber declined to say which location had been chosen, or which firm had been selected as the FEED contractor. However, he confirmed that the facility was an existing power plant.

“We will announce all the details soon,” he added.

The FEED element is likely to take up to a year, with tenders for the engineering, procurement and construction portion on the $500m plant expected in 2009.

Under the proposed plan carbon dioxide emissions from the power plant will be captured post-combustion and transported by pipeline to oil fields in the emirate. The gas will be used by Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (Adnoc) to maintain oil reservoirs by injecting it into the fields.

The scheme will free up associated gas that is used for this purpose and cut carbon emissions. If it is successful, the programme will be rolled out in Abu Dhabi, and additional schemes could be introduced at a rate of one a year.

Al-Jaber also said Masdar was looking at China both as an investment destination and as a source of technology and manufacturing expertise. It is hoping to convince Chinese firms to locate in the planned $22bn carbon-neutral Masdar city in Abu Dhabi.

“We want to attract Chinese firms to set up,” he said. “We are setting it up as a free zone with no tax to encourage investors.”

The company is also considering making investments in China.