ExxonMobil will expand its carbon capture and storage facility in LaBarge, Wyoming. The location currently captures nearly 20% of all human-made CO2 captured in the world each year.
The company completed front-end engineering and design work for the project in December 2021 and expects to issue the engineering, procurement and construction contract in March. Pending regulatory approvals, startup is estimated in 2025. According to company officials, the expansion is part of the company’s 2030 emission-reduction plans and supports the company’s ambition to achieve net zero greenhouse emissions (Scopes 1 and 2) for its operated assets by 2050.
“Carbon capture and storage is a readily available technology that can play a critical role in helping society reduce greenhouse gas emissions,” said Joe Blommaert, president of ExxonMobil Low Carbon Solutions. “By expanding carbon capture and storage at LaBarge, we can reduce emissions from our operations and continue to demonstrate the large-scale capability for carbon capture and storage to address emissions from vital sectors of the global economy, including industrial manufacturing.”
The expansion project will capture up to 1.2 million metric tons of CO2, in addition to the 6-7 million metric tons captured at LaBarge each year, according to company officials. Over the next six years, the company plans to invest more than $15 billion on lower-emission initiatives.
“Our state has always been a leader in carbon capture, utilization and sequestration (CCUS) and we are pleased to see projects like this that bring that technology forward. Wyoming and our industries do more than talk about carbon capture technologies. We help develop and deploy them,” said Wyoming Governor Mark Gordon. “This announcement is a great example of what industry can do to reduce greenhouse emissions and develop resources. I am delighted that ExxonMobil has decided to move forward with their expansion in Wyoming. This helps Wyoming advance its commitment to develop the technology to become carbon negative.”
In addition to producing natural gas, the LaBarge facility is one of the world’s largest sources of helium, producing approximately 20% of global supply. Helium is an essential component for health care equipment such as magnetic resonance imaging, high-tech products including fiber optics and semiconductors, and materials for space travel.