Australian carbon capture and storage (CCS) developer deepC Store has signed an agreement that could see it help decarbonise the operations of Japan’s largest steel producer, Nippon Steel Corporation (NSC).

DeepC Store revealed Monday it had signed a joint study agreement to evaluate the commercial feasibility for deepC Store to capture and transport between 1 million and 5 million tonnes per annum of liquefied carbon dioxide from NSC's operations.

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The captured and liquefied CO2 would be sent to deepC Store’s flagship offshore multi-user floating CCS hub project, Cstore1, offshore Australia.

“We are very pleased to accelerate our CStore1 development with NSC’s participation, a significant global player in the steel industry, for material reduction of CO2 emissions,” said deepC Store chairman Jack Sato.

“This joint study demonstrates our ongoing commitment to establish CStore1 as the first offshore floating CCS hub project in the Asian Pacific region, and to advance Australia and Japan’s strategic position in the CCS business.”

The agreement will see deepC Store and NSC work together to consider the technical conditions of the liquefied CO2 to be captured and transported as well as negotiate key commercial terms for the capture and transportation of the CO2.

“As we actively pursue various initiatives for achieving carbon neutrality in 2050, we believe that CCS is one of our essential methods for realising carbon neutrality,” said NSC managing executive officer Hideo Suzuki.

"By conducting the joint study with deepC Store based on their unique large-scale offshore floating CCS hub technology, we look forward to enhancing our knowledge on CCS and enabling a breakthrough for conducting CCS.”

DeepC Store’s existing partners that will also collaborate with NSC on the agreement include Australia’s Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO), Add Energy, JX Nippon Oil & Gas Exploration, Kyushu Electric Power, Mitsui OSK. Lines (MOL), Osaka Gas and Osaka Gas Australia, Technip Energies and Toho Gas.

Floating CCS hub

DeepC Store claims its flagship Cstore1 development will be the first floating multi-user CCS hub in Australia and the Asia Pacific region, receiving and storing CO2 from multiple sources and industries.

The proposed project will look to capture between 1.5 million and 7.5 million tpa of CO2 from industrial sources in Australia and the Asia-Pacific region.

The captured CO2 will then be liquefied and transported by ship to a CO2 floating storage and injection (FSI) hub facility offshore Australia, where it will then be injected into a subsurface storage complex near the facility.

CStore1 project design is also modular and scalable, allowing for additional CO2 carriers and FSI hub facilities that can be added into the network to rapidly increase injection capacity.

While the exact location of CStore1 has not yet been revealed, deepC Store has previously noted that partner CSRIO has identified multiple depleted oil and gas reservoirs and suitable aquifers off the coast of Western Australia, the Northern Territory and Victoria for potential commercial-scale CCS projects.