Under the patronage of H.R.H. Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman Al Saud, Saudi Arabia’s Minister of Energy, and H.E. Shaikh Mohammed bin Khalifa Al Khalifa, Bahrain’s Minister of Oil, on Tuesday, February 25 2020, the first edition of the International Carbon Capture Utilization and Storage Conference (ICCUS 2020) has been inaugurated in Riyadh. With the participation of more than 800 participants from the dignitaries of His Excellencies the ministers of oil and energy from various countries of the world and the CEO’s of companies specialized in the oil sector and technicians and academics. Where they will discuss the role of carbon capture, use and storage in enabling the global carbon economy, organized by the Saudi Ministry of Energy, the National Oil and Gas Authority (NOGA) and supported by Saudi Aramco, Bahraini oil companies and a number of international companies.
H.E. the Minister expressed his great happiness in the joint cooperation with the Saudi side, which comes in the belief of the two kingdoms under the leadership of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, King of Saudi Arabia, and H.M. King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa, King of Bahrain, the importance of enhancing resilience and reducing the negative effects of climate change, and the need to highlight realistic solutions to decarbonize the atmosphere, by deploying carbon capture, use and storage technologies and contributing to international efforts to address the cause of climate change, protecting Bahrain's resources through the circular carbon economy methodology.
H.E. the Minister said that the objectives of the conference came in line with the Vision of the Kingdom of Bahrain 2030 and the government's work program by working to promote and empower the circular carbon economy and raise the economic and environmental efficiency of oil companies and petrochemical companies, strengthening the demand for crude oil and its products and encouraging the CCUS technology to combat climate change, promote oil production, enhance knowledge and development.
H.E. the Minister participated in the ministerial discussion session in which he referred to the strategy of switching from linear model of production to the circular economy model through material recycling, which is based on 6 key components of the carbon economy, namely, energy conservation and clean energy at affordable prices. To capture the remaining carbon, safely store it, use carbon in products and finally process carbon with solutions derived from nature.
H.E. the Minister touched on the initiatives taken by the Kingdom of Bahrain in this regard through the rationalization of energy consumption and the utilization of more than 3,500 billion cubic feet of natural gas, which contributed to avoiding the release of more than 0.2 gigatons of carbon dioxide, and the accession of the National Oil and Gas Authority (NOGA) in 2016, the World Bank's initiative to reduce the burning of gas (flaring), which NOGA was the first oil sector in the region to join the initiative. The Arab Shipbuilding and Repair Yard Company (ASRY) has also committed to maintaining the maximum Sulphur gas produced by marine fuels to 0.5% by installing a gas washing machine for Sulphur oxide, which is the first regional company to install such a device.
H.E. added that the oil companies under NOGA have implemented several initiatives to rationalize and promote energy improvement, which in turn contributed to reducing co2 emissions of at least 0.25 million tons per year. Referring to the Bahrain Modernization Project, which is considered one of the largest oil projects, which is based on improving the standard of energy efficiency by about 28% and will improve the environment surrounding the reduction of Sulphur dioxide by 50% and nitrogen oxides by 5%. As the Gulf Petrochemical Industries Company (GPIC), uses more than half a million tons of carbon from their urea reproducing operations, and Tatweer Petroleum Company and Bahrain National Gas Company (Banagas), re-injects large amounts of CO2 emitted from factories in Bahrain’s field.
The oil sector has also implemented a number of mitigation initiatives, such as the construction of a model mangrove plant nursery, as well as the Hunainya project and the wetland project, which will help reduce the release of 100,000 tons of carbon dioxide per year.
At the end of his speech, H.E. Shaikh Mohammed bin Khalifa Al Khalifa, Minister of Oil expressed his great thanks and appreciation to Saudi Arabia for hosting the event. Highly appreciated the support by the organizers, which came with the participation of the dignitaries who influenced the conference with their extensive experience and knowledge in this important sector. H.E. the Minister also thanked and appreciated the President of the Conference, Eng. Ahmed Al Khowaiter, for his outstanding efforts in preparing and organizing this large event, as well as for the keynote speakers, heads of meetings, delegates and exhibitors, wishing them all success.
The ministerial session was also attended by H.E. Engineer Suhail bin Mohammed Al Mazrouei, Minister of Energy of the United Arab Emirates, H.E. Mohammed Barkindo, Secretary General of OPEC, and H.E. Mr. Masagos Zulkifli, Minister of Environment and Water Resources of Singapore, who discussed in their speech the strategy of energy and climate in the capture, use and storage of carbon.
H.R.H. Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman Al Saud, Minister of Energy and H.E. Shaikh Mohammed bin Khalifa Al Khalifa, Minister of Oil and accompanied by a number of dignitaries and executives of oil companies, also opened the accompanying exhibition, which was attended by a number of companies specialized in oil and gas, manufacturing and chemical industries, energy sector, cement, iron and steel industries, food producers, equipment manufacturers and service companies from around the world that presented the latest technology and experiences related to environmental matters and a large number of representatives of the exhibitors participated in this big event.