8.3 Storage challenges

In most respects, the technical procedures around geologic storage of CO2 can be regarded as mature technologies. For decades, activities such as drilling wells, subsurface mapping, fluid injection, reservoir management, and many monitoring methods have been performed safely and successfully with a high degree of accuracy. Yet storage can be project limiting. If no suitable site can be identified within a region within a reasonable time, there will be greatly increased costs, extensive delays, or even no integrated project. Therefore:

  • it is essential that storage site characterisation begin as soon as possible in the consideration of any CCS project. There is no shortcut to site characterisation;
  • storage evaluations must consider potential impacts or interactions with other basin resources;
  • public concerns of risk associated with CCS are generally around aspects of storage. The perceived risk of leakage and induced seismicity are among the biggest challenges in CCS; and
  • most remaining issues regarding regulations for CCS are storage-related, particularly the issue of long-term liability.