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  • [ September 15, 2009]

    Stanford's Global Climate and Energy Project awards nearly $2 million to Peking University, China University of Geosciences, and the University of Southern California to study carbon sequestration in China

  • Stanford University's Global Climate and Energy Project has initiated an international collaboration with Peking University, China University of Geosciences at Wuhan, and University of Southern California to address fundamental issues associated with large-scale sequestration of carbon dioxide in saline aquifers in China.

    The Global Climate and Energy Project (GCEP) is awarding close to 2 million USD for this research.

    "China and the U.S. are the world's largest emitters of carbon dioxide — and both rely heavily on coal to produce electricity," said Sally Benson, director of GCEP. "We are very excited to support this unique collaboration between three outstanding research institutions in China and the U.S. that could advance technologies for providing reliable electricity supplies while reducing global carbon emissions."

    The new three-year program integrates geological modeling, reservoir simulation and laboratory experiments to identify the best scientific approach for developing safe and secure methods for storage of carbon dioxide in saline aquifers in China.
    Saline aquifers are subsurface geologic formations that have certain characteristics that could allow it to store significant amounts of carbon dioxide.

    Professor Dongxiao Zhang of PKU’s College of Engineering and USC, is directing the 39-person team of scientists, researchers and students from PKU, CUG (Wuhan) and USC. Qingdong Cai, associate professor at PKU, and Yilian Li, professor at CUG (Wuhan), are the co-directors of this effort.

    "Through the generous support from GCEP, this research is investigating the fundamental issues associated with carbon sequestration in Chinese saline aquifers," said Zhang. "We believe such understandings could help guide similar sequestration efforts worldwide."

    "Carbon capture and sequestration is one of the important measures for mitigating global climate change. Our school is one of the organizations that [have] done prior research in this area at an early stage. The award of this project from GCEP is recognition of our capability in this area. This project will promote our exchanges and collaborations with Chinese and international researchers in CCS," added Shiyi Chen, dean of the PKU College of Engineering.

    This new effort brings the total number of GCEP-sponsored research programs to 66, with funding of 87.4 million USD committed since the project's launch in the fall of 2002.

    With the support and participation of four international companies, ExxonMobil, General Electric, Schlumberger Ltd. and Toyota, GCEP explores the science that could lead to energy technologies that are efficient, environmentally benign, and cost effective when deployed on a large scale.

    "Spearheading this international collaboration among leading Chinese and U.S. researchers to study new potential avenues for carbon sequestration is a key milestone for GCEP," said Ashok Belani, GCEP Management Committee member and chief technology officer of Schlumberger.