Ricardo joins Project Skylark to enhance CO2 pipeline safety

Ricardo has announced that it will join Project Skylark, a new partnership aimed at advancing safety standards for carbon dioxide (CO2) pipeline operations.

The initiative addresses the growing need for safe CO2 transport due to the increase in carbon capture, transportation and storage projects that support green energy production globally.

Project Skylark responds to the challenge of transporting increasing volumes of CO2 through extensive networks of onshore and offshore pipelines. These pipelines span a range of terrains, increasing the need for risk assessments to ensure safety.

Alongside DNV, the UK Government’s Health and Safety Executive, the National Centre for Atmospheric Science and the University of Arkansas, Ricardo will provide empirical data on CO2 behaviour in high-volume pipeline release scenarios. This data will be crucial for testing, validating and enhancing industry and academic modelling capabilities.

The project’s outcome will equip the industry and regulators with improved tools and datasets for assessing risks associated with new and repurposed CO2 pipelines. “We’re delighted to support this pioneering initiative,” said Craig Thomson, Chemical Lead for Ricardo.

“Although failure in these networks is extremely rare, by building a greater understanding of the implications of a release incident we will be helping the sector to refine and improve its emergency response plans.”

Ricardo will take a lead role in Challenge 3 of Skylark, which focuses on emergency response. This involves engaging with emergency responders to optimise the use of CO2 dispersion trials and ensuring preparedness for possible CO2 release incidents.

Other Skylark challenges include understanding CO2 pipeline failure dynamics, the effects of terrain on dense vapour clouds and operational issues related to venting.

“We believe considering the potential impact of any large-scale system failures from project conception is essential,” said Daniel Allason, Senior Principal Consultant and Project Skylark Lead at DNV.

“The opportunity to prepare emergency response solutions provides confidence in our abilities to minimise the risk and potential impact of a release.”

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