2019’s event was a festival of practical technology, project planning and actual case histories in what was the 25th Annual CO2 Conference Week. It began on Monday morning, December 9th and continued through noon on Friday, December 13th at the sparkling new and ultra-modern Midland Center (Bush Convention Center (BCC)) in downtown Midland. The sponsors of the week are the Who’s Who of upstream, midstream and service companies serving the CO2 and gas injection worlds.
The “kickoff” Monday’s event was the 17th annual EOR Carbon Management Workshop designed to address the emerging business areas of carbon capture and storage (CCS) and CC Utilization and Storage (CCUS). New project planning has seen robust activity since the passage of the new 45Q tax credit incentives in Feb 2018. The event brought together the companies planning and implementing the projects with a strong emphasis on the companies building around CO2 EOR in the storage side of the projects. It also examined the new and ongoing Federal and State legislative and policy initiatives attempting to encourage the CO2 capture. The CO2 week welcoming reception was held that evening at the Bush Convention Center (BCC). The next day featured a field trip to the SACROC oilfield which has seen CO2 injection for 46 years and is still storing 6 million tons of CO2 each year while making ~30,000 barrels of oil per day. Also, a visit to the largest CO2 recycle plant in the world was part of the agenda. On Wednesday the 11th, the conference had its annual full-day seminar, this year concentrating on the detection and properties of vertical transmissive fractures in the subsurface where immense progress has been made due to the explosion of horizontal wells and the technology associated with them. A lineup of the finest group of worldwide natural fracture observers had been gathered and several case histories were featured in the PM portion of the event. Natural, transmissive fractures are being shown to affect a host of well issues including sour oil where sweet oil was expected, poor oil cuts, inability to pump off depressuring wells, and induced seismicity. The featured evening reception at the Permian Basin Petroleum Museum capped off the day. The key sponsors of the reception were Kinder Morgan CO2 and the Permian Basin Section of the SPE.
Thursday’s morning session began with a recap of the Monday Workshop but was dedicated to actual case histories of the emerging field of cyclic gas injection. Actual field data was made available to review the effectiveness of EOR in the shale plays using recycled natural gas and projections of the effectiveness of CO2 injection. The keynote speaker at lunchtime was Dr. Todd Hoffman of Montana Tech who has traveled around the globe as an SPE Distinguished Lecturer on the cyclic injection in unconventional reservoirs. The PM session had some CO2 EOR case histories but featured some of the exciting advances in design and implementation of recycle gas plants. A 25th-anniversary celebration reception was held that evening at the Bush Center sponsored by several of the long-standing sponsors of the Conference Week.
The final CO2 session was held on Friday and featured a recap of the Wednesday short course on natural transmissive fractures and three CO2 reservoir case histories. A networking lunch followed with a sandwich buffet and concluded the conference week activities. The conference week ended at 1:00 pm after lunch.