The US Department of Energy (DOE) has offered a conditional commitment to guarantee loans of up to $2bn to Lake Charles Methanol, LLC to construct the world’s first methanol production facility to employ carbon (CO2) capture technology in Lake Charles, Louisiana.

The captured CO2 would be utilised for enhanced oil recovery (EOR) in Texas.

By using petcoke as the feedstock and employing CO2 capture at the project, the proposed project will reduce emissions of CO2 that would otherwise be released.

US Secretary of Energy, Ernest Moniz, said, “This conditional commitment represents a major milestone in the Department’s efforts to scale up CO2 capture utilisation and sequestration and continue American leadership in advanced fossil energy technologies.”

The proposed plant will produce methanol, hydrogen (H2), and other industrial gases and chemical products. The CO2 captured from the petcoke gasification plant will be compressed for commercial pipeline transport. The captured CO2 will be transported to oil fields in Texas for EOR, resulting in sequestration of 4.2m metric tonnes of CO2 annually.

The project reduces greenhouse gas emissions by 36% compared to typical methanol facilities. Overall, the project captures 77% of all CO2 produced by the facility.