FAQs

What is the overall cost of the IEAGHG Weyburn-Midale CO2 Monitoring and Storage Project?

Independent of the oilfield operations themselves, the research project has seen in-kind and cash contributions since 2000 from many different sources totalling over $45 million (Can).  This includes cash contributions from the Governments of Canada and Saskatchewan (Natural Resources Canada and the Saskatchewan Ministry of Energy and Resources), the Government of the United States (United States Department of Energy), the Province of Alberta, and the Government of Japan. Ten different private sector companies have also contributed both cash and in-kind (software, research) to the project.

Individual research organizations – over 40 universities, geological surveys and other groups – have also contributed in-kind as part of this overall total.

Alberta Innovates (formerly Alberta Research Council)
Bluewave Resources
British Geological Survey (BGS)
Bureau de Recherches Geologiques et Minieres France (BRGM)
Canadian Energy Research Institute (CERI)
Canadian Light Source
Carleton University
Colorado School of Mines
ECOmatters
Furgo Seismic Imaging
GEDCO Inc.
Geological Survey of Canada
Geological Survey of Demark and Greenland (GEUS)
Hampson Russell Veritas
Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia (INGV)
J.D. Mollard and Associates Ltd.
Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratories (USDOE) – LBNL
Lawrence Livermore National Laboratories (USDOE) – LLNL
Monitor Scientific Corporation International (MSCI)
North Dakota Geological Survey
Permedia Group
Quintessa Ltd.
Rakhit Petroleum Consulting, Ltd.
Saskatchewan Geological Survey
Saskatchewan Research Council
Schlumberger – Doll Research
T.L. Watson and Associates
University of Alberta
University of Bristol – United Kingdom
University of Calgary
University of California Irvine
University of Regina
University of Saskatchewan
URS Canada Inc.

 

What is the difference between Weyburn-Midale and other operations that use CO2?

 

The Weyburn and Midale CO2-enhanced oil recovery (EOR) operations are unique in a number of ways. 

The first is that the souce of CO2 being used for enhanced oil recovery is man-made (anthropogenic).  Most other CO2 injection projects currently underway, whether the Sleipner project in Norway or In Salah in Algeria, use sources of carbon dioxide that are naturally occurring underground and are then re-injected underground in order not to vent the gas .  The Weyburn-Midale project actually takes CO2 that would otherwise enter the atmosphere from a coal gasification plant and injects it, effectively mitigating almost 3 million tonnes of emissions per year.

What is the history of the Weyburn-Midale oilfield/project?

1954

  • Oil production begins at Weyburn and Midale fields

1998

  • Pan Canadian (now Cenovus) announces plan to implement a large-scale EOR project using CO2 captured from a coal gasification plant and pipelined 320km north to the Weyburn field
  • Pipeline construction begins

1999

  • IEA holds workshop to discuss research opportunity
  • An international research team is created, and baseline data collection begins

2000

  • Government, industry and researchers from around the world pool resources together to form the largest project ever to study CO2 geological storage
  • Pipeline construction completed and Cenovus begins injecting 5000 tonnes/day of 95% pure CO2

2004

  • Phase I completed: report issued by the PTRC and IEAGHG
  • Planning for Second Phase begins

2005

  • Apache Canada joins Project and begins injecting 1300 tonnes/day of CO2 for EOR at adjacent Midale field

2006

  • Final Phase underway
    • Cenovus injecting 6500 tonnes/day (increasing oil production by 18,000 barrels/day)
    • Apache injecting 2000 tonnes/day

2010

  • EnCana splits into two companies, separating its oil operations into a new company called Cenovus Energy.  The Weyburn oil field comes under the operation of the new company.
  • Cenovus is injecting 6500 tonnes of new CO2 per day, along with an equal amount of recycle, meaning that the operations are injecting a total of almost 13000 tonnes per day into the Weyburn field

2011

  • The IEAGHG Weyburn-Midale CO2 Monitoring and Storage Project completes its research program, and scientists begin work on a manual to help other jurisdictions successfully store CO2 in depleted oil fields
  • On-going monitoring assures the safe and effective operation of the two oil fields.

What are the statistics for oil production and CO2 stored in both the Weyburn and Midale oil fields?

Weyburn oil field:

Field Size:
70 square miles

Projected CO2 incremental oil recovery:
Additional 155 million barrels

Oil Type:
Medium sour crude

Projected CO2 stored by the end of the life of the field:
30+ million tonnes* (gross)
26+ million tonnes (net)

Original oil in place:
1.4 billion barrels

 

Oil recovery (prior to using CO2 for enhanced oil recovery):
370 million barrels

*equivalent to removing
over 6 million cars
off the road for a year

 

Midale oil field:

Field Size:
40 square miles

Projected CO2 incremental oil recovery:
67 million barrels

Oil Type:
Medium sour crude

Projected CO2 stored by the end of the life of the field:
10+ million tonnes* (gross)
8.5+ million tonnes (net)

Original oil in place:
515 million barrels

 

Oil recovery (prior to using CO2 for enhanced oil recovery):
154 million barrels

*equivalent to removing
over 2 million cars
off the road for a year

What is the total amount of CO2 that could potentially be stored in the Weyburn and Midale oil fields?

By the end of the production life of the Weyburn and Midale oil fields, approximately 40 million tonnes of CO2 will have been stored in the two reservoirs.  But the storage potential is actually much higher.  The International Energy Agency Greenhouse Gas R&D Programme has estimated that the Weyburn field, alone, could store up to 55 million tonnes of CO2

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