​Oxy to design Permian direct air capture facility with Squamish-based Carbon Engineering

Carbon Engineering's plant in Squamish, B.C. Image: Carbon Engineering

Occidental Petroleum says it will work with Squamish, B.C.-based Carbon Engineering to engineer and design the world’s largest direct air capture (DAC) and sequestration facility.

The plant, to be located in the Permian Basin, would capture CO2 directly from the atmosphere to be used in Occidental’s enhanced oil recovery (EOR) operations.

In January, Occidental subsidiary Oxy Low Carbon Futures and Chevron Technology Ventures took equity stakes in Carbon Engineering.

Other investors in the company include Microsoft founder Bill Gates and Murray Edwards, executive chairman of Canadian Natural Resources Limited.

“Using atmospheric CO2 for oil recovery greatly reduces the net addition of CO2 to the atmosphere from oil production and fuel use, and opens a pathway to producing fully carbon-neutral or even net-negative fuels,” Oxy Low Carbon Ventures president Richard Jackson said in a statement.

The proposed project will start with one DAC plant that captures 500 kilotonnes of atmospheric CO2 per year and is expected to expand to include multiple DAC plants, each capable of capturing one megatonne of atmospheric CO2 annually, the companies said.

If the initial plant is approved by Occidental and Carbon Engineering, construction is expected to begin in 2021, with the plant becoming operational within approximately two years.