Equinor takes a stake in Texas offshore carbon storage project

Written by Nick Blenkey
Location of offshore carbon storage

Image: Equinor

Given the way its electricity market works, Texas may not be the friendliest place for offshore wind development. But wind farms are not the only kind of green development going on offshore and Equinor has just acquired a 25% interest in Bayou Bend CCS LLC. Including 40,000 gross acres in state waters offshore Beaumont and Port Arthur, Texas, it is the first and only offshore lease in the U.S. dedicated to CO2 sequestration.

“Commercial CCS solutions are critical for hard-to-abate industries to meet their climate ambitions while maintaining their activity,” said Grete Tveit, senior vice president for low carbon solutions at Equinor. “Entering Bayou Bend strengthens our low carbon solutions portfolio and supports our ambition to mature and develop 15-30 million tonnes of equity CO2 transport and storage capacity per year by 2035. Our experience from developing carbon storage projects can help advance decarbonization efforts in one of the largest industrial corridors in the U.S.

With 100,000 acres onshore in Chambers and Jefferson Counties in addition to the 40,000 offshore, Bayou Bend is positioned to be one of the largest CCS solutions in the U.S. for industrial emitters, with gross potential offshore carbon storage resources of more than one billion metric tons. The Bayou Bend total acreage includes nearly 100,000 gross acres onshore in Chambers and Jefferson Counties, Texas, and approximately 40,000 gross acres offshore Beaumont and Port Arthur, Texas.

Bayou Bend is a joint venture between Chevron U.S.A. Inc., through its Chevron New Energies division, Talos Energy Inc., through its Talos Low Carbon Solutions division, and Equinor. Equinor acquired its 25% share through the purchase of Texas Carbon 1 LLC, a subsidiary of Carbonvert. Chevron is the operator, with a 50% interest, and Talos holds a 25% interest.

“We look forward to working together with our partners to further mature this exciting project. Bayou Bend is Equinor’s first announced low carbon solutions project on the Gulf Coast. Alongside our upstream production and offshore wind developments, we’re strengthening our position as a broad energy company and expanding our footprint in the Gulf region,” said Chris Golden, senior vice president and U.S. country manager at Equinor. “Bayou Bend is a significant milestone towards growing our low carbon portfolio in the US.”

“Delivering lower carbon solutions to harder-to-abate industries is fundamental to Chevron New Energies’ mission, and as a Southeast Texas native, I know how vital these industries are to our local communities and their economies,” said Chris Powers, vice president, CCUS, Chevron New Energies. “We thank Carbonvert for its work on the project, and we look forward to Equinor bringing its expertise and resources to Bayou Bend as it joins the partnership.”

The offshore carbon storage project’s location near major industrial corridors in the Houston Ship Channel and Beaumont / Port Arthur area will provide a potential decarbonization option for industries such as refining, cement, steel, chemicals, and manufacturing. Industrial emissions in the Texas Gulf Coast region are estimated to be approximately 100 million metric tonnes of CO2 per year.

“We continue to make significant progress in developing Bayou Bend, which we believe will be a premier regional carbon storage hub solution for Texas’ largest industrial region. Equinor is a welcomed addition to the partnership. Their experience and track record further enhance the joint venture, which is committed to developing safe, reliable, cost-effective lower carbon solutions while enabling continued economic growth,” said Robin Fielder, executive vice president – low carbon strategy and chief sustainability officer at Talos.

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