DNV KEMA Launches New Risk Management Guidance for the CCS Industry

Thu, 31 January 2013

In August 2011 DNV KEMA initiated the CO2 Risk Management (CO2RISKMAN) Joint Industry Project to develop a publicly-available guidance on major accident risk management of the carbon dioxide (CO2) stream within CSS projects. This guidance is now complete and provides the CCS industry with clear and comprehensive information to help in the development of effective CO2 risk management across the whole CCS chain from capture facilities through to underground injection.

“There is no reason why the major accident risks from a CO2 handling system within a CCS operation cannot be low and well within acceptable limits but to achieve this will require the application of existing rigorous hazard management processes combined with an adequate understanding of the properties and behaviours of CO2,” says Hamish Holt CO2RISKMAN project manager, and principal consultant at DNV. “A significant leak from a large inventory CO2 handling system has the potential to be life threatening to people caught within the ensuing dispersing cloud or could pose local environmental harm. In the same way as the risks from other better known hazards are managed, the risks from the CO2 stream also need to be well managed and the new guidance will help this happen,” he adds.

Managing risks
“There is little experience handling very large quantities of CO2 outside the US, where CO2 is used to enhance oil production. With the introduction of CCS this will change. CCS engineers, project management, system operators, hazard management specialists, and others who have a key role in delivering a safe operation need to have adequate understanding of the potential CO2 hazards so that they can effectively manage the associated risks,” explains Holt and adds, “aspects of CO2 such as the rapid corrosion that can occur if water enters a CO2 system, the very cold temperatures that can occur if a CO2 system is depressurised, the effect of impurities, the difficulties associated with modelling leaks, and the toxicological effects on humans when air with a high CO2 concentration is inhaled, all need to be adequately understood.”

The CO2RISKMAN guidance systematically presents and explains all the main issues and aspects associated with CO2 that need to be considered within a robust hazard management process. It discusses the potential safety and environmental hazards, their causes, escalation routes and possible consequences. In addition, for each link of the CCS chain the guidance provides assistance on hazard identification, risk assessment and what can be done to reduce the risks down to an acceptable level.

Recognising that the guidance needs to be readily assessable to a wide range of people with different backgrounds and requirements, the guidance has been developed into four ‘Level’ documents. Level 1 provides a concise executive summary whereas Level 4 is a 300 page, in-depth, knowledge source that is sub-divided to address each link of the CCS chain.

Stakeholder confidence
“The CO2RISKMAN project levered DNV KEMA’s considerable risk management experience and CCS knowledge along with that of the project sponsors to create what should prove to be a very valuable reference source for all CCS projects,” notes Kaare Helle head of CCS business development DNV KEMA. “Using the guidance will help gain public confidence that CCS can be delivered in a safe and responsible manner through knowledge-based, consistent and robust hazard management.”

The CO2RISKMAN guidance was developed with active support from the following JIP participants: Air Liquide, AMEC, Chevron, Environment Agency, E.ON, Gassco, Gassnova, Global CCS Institute, Health and Safety Executive, IEAGHG, Institute for Studies and Power Engineering, Maersk Oil, National Grid, Norwegian Petroleum Safety Authority (Ptil), Scottish Environment Protection Agency and Shell.

The CO2RISKMAN JIP guidance complements the output from DNV’s other JIPs: CO2CAPTURE, CO2PIPETRANS, CO2WELLS and CO2QUALSTORE. It can be downloaded for free from

CCS has been introduced as one of the most promising means to achieve the global goals of reduction in anthropogenic CO2 emissions. According to predictions by the International Energy Agency‘s (IEA) the world’s energy demand is expected to increase by 40% up to 2030, and 80% will still be covered by burning fossil fuels. “In this perspective, to capture and store the CO2 in geological formations to make gas and coal power plants clean might be one of the few really significant means to stabilise and reduce anthropogenic CO2 emissions,” says Helle.

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