Continental Resources will invest $250 million over the next two years to help fund construction of the world’s largest carbon capture and storage project, North Dakota officials said Wednesday.
The Oklahoma-based oil and gas giant will also provide geological expertise to the $4.5 million project being undertaken by Summit Carbon Solutions. The company plans to build 2,000 miles of pipeline to collect carbon dioxide produced by ethanol plants in five Midwestern states and pump it underground for storage in North Dakota.
Project officials said the involvement of Continental Resources will likely help raise capital for the project.
“We believe this project will become a model for the rest of the world,” said Continental Resources CEO Bill Berry. “We are delighted to be part of this world-class, global project. It was obvious for Continental to participate. »
Capturing CO2 from ethanol plants is the most capital-efficient way to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, Berry said.
Continental Resources is North Dakota’s largest oil concessionaire and producer. The company has unrivaled knowledge of the Williston Basin, where the captured carbon will be sequestered.
“Carbon capture definitely has to happen,” said founder and chairman Harold Hamm. “That’s what you should do.”
Hamm said the regulatory environment in North Dakota and the state’s leadership in CO2 sequestration for nearly 20 years are among the things that will make this project successful.
Summit Carbon Solutions announced the $250 million investment in Tharaldson’s ethanol plant in Casselton, North Dakota. The plant is one of 31 ethanol plants in Iowa, Minnesota, Nebraska and the Dakotas that have pledged to supply CO2 to the pipeline.
The project could initially displace up to 12 million metric tons of carbon dioxide per year or the equivalent of removing carbon emissions from 2.6 million cars, officials said.
“This project will halve the carbon footprint of ethanol plants,” said Bruce Rastetter, CEO of Summit Agricultural Group. “It gives biofuels a desperately needed future.”
North Dakota Governor Doug Burgum said the project will also be able to capture and store emissions from industrial factories and power plants.
Burgum praised the project’s investors for “investing those dollars in projects that are actually making a difference right now.”
The governor announced in May that North Dakota aims to be the first state to be carbon neutral by 2030.
“We have the opportunity – without mandates, without regulations – to be the first state to do this, and part of that is due to the incredible geology that we have that would allow us to store all the CO2 in the country for the 50 next few years,” Burgum said.
Summit began developing plans for the carbon capture project and forming partnerships with ethanol producers in 2019. The system is on track to be operational in the first half of 2024.
“It’s super innovative, super practical and super strategic for the country,” Burgum said.
Lee Beck of the Clean Air Task Force says there are 12 storage facilities in the United States, capturing 23 million tons of CO2 per year.