Australian energy companies, Santos and its project partner Beach Energy, have been provided with a A$15m grant from the Australian Government’s Carbon Capture Use and Storage Development Fund.

With an objective to reduce emissions in the natural gas sector, the grant is recognition of the significance of a large-scale carbon capture and storage (CCS) project in outback South Australia.

The A$210m Moomba CCS project will help the Fund reach its carbon reduction targets by safely and permanently storing 1.7 million tonnes of carbon dioxide (CO2) per year, with a capacity for up to 20 million tonnes annually across the Cooper Basin.

Hoping to create a network that will see large-scale abatement of greenhouse gas emissions, Santos Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director, Kevin Gallagher, said the project will also be one of the lowest-cost projects in the world at A$25-30 per tonnes.

“The Australian Government’s focus on CCS technologies will put Australia at the forefront of the global energy transformation that is rapidly occurring.”, Mr Gallagher said.

He continued, “Australia has a natural competitive advantage in CCS with known high-quality, stable geological storage basins capable of injection at a rate of 300 million tonnes per year for at least 100 years – the same basins that have safely and permanently held oil and gas in place for tens of millions of years.”

As well as providing a greener future for the country itself, the venture also looks to stimulate the employment sector. With the Moomba CCS project supporting around 240 new South Australian jobs through construction, the partnership intends to sustain thousands more over the project’s operational life.