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Japan Sets a 200-Million Ton/Year Target for Carbon Capture and Sequestration

CO2 trapping mechanisms in a geological formation.

Japan Times. The Japanese Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry plans to set up facilities both in Japan and worldwide to capture and store underground 200 million tons of carbon dioxide annually. Half will be disposed of in Japan, the other half abroad.

This is the first time the ministry has set a numerical target to cut carbon dioxide emissions using carbon capture and storage (CCS) technology. The target of 200 million tons is equivalent to one-sixth of current domestic carbon-dioxide emissions.

The government will spearhead research, build facilities and seek necessary legislation with the aim of making CCS technology one of the main methods of reducing emissions, according to METI.

The government will take the lead in developing technology and establishing technology demonstration systems until the cost of reducing carbon dioxide emissions reaches around ¥3,000 (US$26) per ton.

Outside Japan, the government plans to support CCS in combination with natural gas mining, thereby obtaining carbon credits from developing countries by around 2010.

In April, METI had hosted an international workshop in Paris on Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) methodological issues in regard to CCS. The workshop was intended to develop and deepen mutual understanding among both sides of CCS and CDM, and to discuss how to implement CCS projects as CDM.




Now another reason to buy Japanese cars (built and assembled in Japan). Great gas mileage AND a portion of the production based CO2 emissions are being sequestered by their govt.


This seems weird to me. You generate CO2 in Country A (Japan in this case) and you extract gas (which could have been left in the ground) in Country B and 'backfill' the reservoir with somebody else's CO2. I don't buy it; I think A should deal with the CO2 at the point of production. The whole system is subject to rubbery accounting as witnessed by the fact that it is regarded as a done deal when it hasn't been proven on a large scale.


Aussie: CO2 sequestration has undergone extensive testing in Weyburn Saskatewan. The test was a success. The added bonus is that it improves production in the well. I'm not certain of the economics, but I believe it goes some way towards covering the cost of carbon capture.


Fantastic! Finally someone doing something about CO2. I will definitely buy Japanese next time I get a vehicle. I normally go all out to buy American made products but I feel no loyalty to American car manufacturers.

allen zheng

The biggest fans of CO2 sequestation may turnout to be oil companies with hard to extract oil/mature->old wells, and coal bed methane producers.

Rafael Seidl

Japan gets 10% of the world's earthquakes. How well will their domestic CO2 sequestration work over the coming decades and centuries? How would they detect leaks? The country has virtualy no oil fields to inject CO2 into.

Lofty ambitions are one thing, achieving them quite another. It would make more sense to me if Japan decided to avoid 200 million tons of CO2 production in the furst place by agressively switching to renewable fuels. They have to import almost all of their energy anyhow.


Quick question: can the same ships that deliver LNG from Qatar be used to transport the CO2 back to the old oil wells in the middle east. (Cost of liquifaction, compatability with ship and equipment). The CO2 would have value to anyone trying to enhance oil recovery.

Rafael Seidl

Neil -

interesting idea but Qatar has very little oil. The CO2 would have to be transported to Saudi Arabia or Kuwait via a pipeline. All that gets a wee bit expensive, especially given that there is a fair amount of flare gas to go around over there. If the geology of an oil reservoir permits it, any excess methane tends to get pumped back into the ground anyhow.

tom deplume

There are two biological ways to reliably store CO2 for thousands of years. One is to grow plants, convert to charcoal, then bury the charcoal. The other would be the cultivation of shellfish. Shells have successfully sequestered CO2 for hundreds of million years.


If you can transport CO2 in the same ships that deliver LNG then the ship could make a stop in Kuwait before going back to Qatar. I don't think a pipeline for CO2 would be horribly expensive, there are already some fairly long ones in North America.

Having said that I suspect the Japanese are planning on dumping the stuff in a deep ocean trench where the temperature is low enough to keep it in a liquid state.

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