Rationale

This proposal supplements and builds on the CGS research activities aimed at evaluating CO2 geological storage possibilities on the territory of the Czech Republic, started by the participation in the CASTOR international research project (2004-2006, 6th Framework Programme of the EU) and continued especially by the EU GeoCapacity project. Within EU GeoCapacity, a 6th Framework Programme specific targeted research project with a full title “Assessing European Capacity for Geological Storage of Carbon Dioxide” a comprehensive assessment of Czech sedimentary structures was performed, structures potentially suitable for geological storage of CO2 were identified and the most promising ones were selected. These are especially the deep saline aquifers of the Central Bohemian Permian-Carboniferous basins and (semi-)depleted hydrocarbon fields of eastern Moravia. Two initial case studies were elaborated and focused on these two types of structures. For three of the partial Permian-Carboniferous basins – the Zatec Basin, the Roudnice Basin and the Mnichovo Hradiste Basin, basic 3D volumetric models of the aquifers were constructed. These results represent the scientific basis the proposed project will build on.

The activities described above are only the first initial step towards a possible real CO2 geological storage project. A lot of further research is needed, and the proposed project would be the next logical step on this route. Financing of the proposed activities from the EEA/Norwegian Financial Mechanisms seems to be very appropriate for several reasons:

  • There is no financing available at the moment for continuing research activities on CO2 geological storage in Czechia in 2009 and onwards, neither from national nor from international resources.
  • Norway is the world-leading country in CO2 storage implementation, running two of four industrial-scale CCS projects that are in progress worldwide (Sleipner and Snohvit). Cooperation between a donor-country top-level research institute and a Czech research organisation is a good example of knowledge transfer and research capacity building in one of the EU New Member States.
  • Czech Republic belongs to a group of countries with the highest per-capita CO2 emissions in Europe. Making CO2 capture and storage possible on the territory of the Czech Republic would be an essential step towards lowering the volumes of CO2 emitted in the atmosphere and improving this unfavourable position.
  • Climate change mitigation and reduction of CO2 emissions is a top priority both in Norway and in the Czech Republic. Both countries are signatories of the Kyoto Protocol and are active in the preparation of new, more ambitious global goals for the post-Kyoto period.

The proposed research activities represent a unique research project focused explicitly on Czech geological structures and their CO2 storage potential. There has not been, and there will not be, any other financing of the activities described in this proposal.