Messer say that a Croatian pilot project using CO2 to increase yields from sealed oilfields has been a great success.

The project began in 2004 when Messer first trialled the EOR (Enhanced Oil Recovery) system together with its Eastern European business partner, INA Naftaplin. The goal was to check the effect of introducing CO2 in an existing oilfield with the hope of maximising its flagging resources.

For the first two test cycles, two 16,000 ton shipments of liquid carbon dioxide were delivered to the drilling location in Ivanic Grad. The product was then stored and pumped into the earth at a pressure of around a 100 bar. The results were so successful the client decided against the three further testing stages and quickly moved the main project onto a larger scale.

Messer believe that the system could have an enormous impact upon oil production, both prolonging life for oilfields and increasing yields by 10 to 15 percent. These figures would create a potential 1300 million additional barrels from the European continent alone.

The process also allows for the safe disposal of the $quot;climate-killer$quot; CO2 gas, which remains stored in the oilfield and does not return to the environment. On average for each barrel of oil that is additionally produced, one third of a ton of carbon dioxide remains stored.