What is needed from CO₂ transport, an essential element of the CCUS value chain?

  • 2022-01-12
  • 2 min read

Hopes for LCO₂ Carriers that enable mass transport over long distances

Global warming has become an issue that concerns all of humankind. Many countries, including the world’s biggest emitters, have begun to set ambitious goals for net-zero CO2 emissions thanks to the Paris Agreement, which sets out a global framework to limit climate change and the more advanced agreement at the 26th United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26) in Glasgow, UK. However, these ambitious goals cannot be achieved simply through converting to CO₂-free alternative fuels alone. Additional efforts must be made to reduce CO₂ emissions, such as power-saving and energy efficiency improvements in existing infrastructure. Carbon Capture and Utilization (CCU) or Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) technologies, which separate and collect CO2 before it is emitted and accumulated so it can be used effectively as a resource, are also important for achieving these goals.

 Figure: Achieving a carbon-neutral society by 2050 by promoting CO2 reduction and capture

A value chain is now being constructed with a view toward societal implementation of this CCUS technology. An estimated 4.3 to 13 billion tons of CO₂ will be captured annually worldwide in 2050. Pipelines and ships are being considered as the main means of transporting the captured CO₂ to the sites where it is stored and utilized. On the other hand, for long-distance transport, ships are more efficient and cheaper option.

A one-stop solution that utilizes existing infrastructure

One distinctive feature of CCUS is that it can be used to decarbonize existing infrastructure without causing damage to it (which would render it a stranded asset). Optimizing the design of the CCUS value chain depends on a variety of factors, including carbon emissions volumes, geographical considerations such as distance from emissions source to storage and utilization sites, and national policies. Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) Group can provide a one-stop solution including CO₂ capture equipment, compressors, and carriers to transport liquefied CO₂ (LCO₂ carriers) to establish a CCUS value chain. This solution meets a range of criteria while saving social expenditures by utilizing existing infrastructure.

 The CCUS Value chain

MHI Group, which has established in shipping since 1857, can leverage its extensive knowledge in the area of CO2 transportation. Its technological capabilities, design and construction experience with carriers of liquified gas such as LNG and LPG, along with its advanced handling technologies for low-temperature liquified gas will contribute to providing safe transport of CO₂ by LCO2 Carriers.

LNG carrier (Sayaringo STaGE)

“Sayaringo STaGE” LNG Carrier developed by Mitsubishi Shipbuilding

Expanding the potential of LCO₂ Carriers based on experience and technology

MHI Group has also set its sights on development of technologies related to multi gas carriers that can haul various types of liquefied gas cargoes. There are also needs to reduce CO₂ emissions from the ships that transport CO₂, and to achieve this we are developing zero-emission technologies such as onboard CO₂ capture and ammonia handling technology when using ammonia as the main fuel. MHI Group will identify diversifying market needs and continue to provide customer-focused solutions based on many years of experience and technologies related to gas carrier construction and gas handling.