A carbon capture project at San Juan Generating Station has received $22m from the Department of Energy (DOE) cooperative funding agreement awarded to the New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology (New Mexico Tech).

The funding will pay for analysis of a site in northwest New Mexico to accelerate deployment of carbon capture, utilisation and storage technology at San Juan Generation Station. 

Data and analyses produced under the agreement will be used to prepare, submit and attain a permit from the Environmental Protection Agency to potentially construct a CO2 injection well, that would allow for geologic sequestration of 50 million metric tonnes of CO2 at a site near the power plant. 

“This San Juan Generating Station carbon project continues to make tremendous progress even in the face of challenges caused by COVID-19,” said Farmington Mayor, Nate Duckett.

“This project has always been important to the City of Farmington and the entire northwest New Mexico region, but maintaining the 1,500 jobs and tax revenues along with adding significant construction jobs the project will bring is now critical.” 

The new capital included $17.5m from the DOE and $4.5m in cost sharing from the other parties to the agreement.

“The success of this application was largely dependent on past work and analyses performed at New Mexico Tech,” said Dr. Robert Balch of the Petroleum Recovery Research Centre at New Mexico Tech.

“This background allowed the project to start at Phase III, due to existing knowledge about the potential storage site. New Mexico Tech is proud to have formed a New Mexico centric team including the University, the Petroleum Recovery Research Centre, the New Mexico Bureau of Geology, and both of our state’s National Labs.”

“The work project builds on 17 years of previous carbon storage research performed by New Mexico Tech under numerous Department of Energy cooperative agreements.”