The environmental agenda is one of the most discussed topics in the international community. Global warming has already caused serious climate changes and led to a significant increase in the number of natural disasters on the planet. The scientific community, state authorities and businesses stand are in full solidarity to minimize the harm caused to nature using hydrocarbon energy sources.
The oil and gas industry are one of the leaders of greenhouse gas emissions. So, the environmental agenda, as well as the development of technologies to reduce emissions and enhance carbon sequestration were the focus of the forum participants. Moreover, the signing of the agreement clearly demonstrated the commitment of the oil and gas industry to contribute to the preservation of the Earth's ecosphere.
The importance of signing the agreement was emphasized by Deputy Minister and Head of Digital Transformation Department of the Russian Ministry of Energy Pavel Sorokin: "Hydrocarbons are now under pressure. Regarding connection with the actualization of the energy transition climate agenda, this pressure will increase. Hydrocarbons are one of the emitters of CO₂. It is crucial to note that hydrocarbons currently make up the bulk of the global energy balance. According to various estimates, 70%-85% of the world's energy comes from hydrocarbons.
We have noticed how the automobile companies’ policies are evolving, in terms of reducing investment in internal combustion engines and switching to hydrogen and electric motors, with automobile transportation being one of the major consumers of oil. Therefore, more restricted standards have been developed: emission trading system and cross-border regulation have been introduced. This is the reality we must live in.
From a policy perspective, in this area we must work first and foremost to keep our economy competitive. And since the hydrocarbon segment is a very significant part of this economy and a customer of a lot of equipment of industrial products and a donor in terms of taxes - we must understand that even though there is regulation, it is important to ensure that the cost of operating the sector is at a level that would allow us to keep investing.
This means that if today we are in a price range of $20 to $50 per barrel for a full cycle of oil reserve development, we must ensure that we stay in that range. If we do that, I'm sure we can be competitive for the next 20 to 30 years, regardless of how the demand for oil will change.
That is why different technologies are now being explored. We are ranking the technologies that are necessary for this, and it is not always what is being discussed or if there is a 'hype' around. For example, there are technologies that we are actively working on and for which a support system has been set up to guarantee returns.
Today some of these technologies have become quite expensive for emissions reduction, however, there are already cheaper and faster ways for the oil and gas industry: reduction of associated gas flaring and its utilization when CO₂ is injected in time, or preservation and increase of oil recovery, reduction of leakages during gas transportation, generation efficiency increase. All these methods should be ranked by cost to avoid overburdening the consumer and give additional economic benefits. Here is the main challenge.”
As for the oil and gas industry, there are already pilot projects with oil companies and partners from other sectors in the field of capture and storage technologies. That is, technologies are being worked on to bring them to the industrial level. This is a colossal job. Now companies are also actively studying the possibility of using the forest estate. Many companies consider this opportunity, and traditional themes like modernization lead to lower unit costs and higher energy efficiency. All these technologies are being implemented by both oil and power generation companies.
The importance of developing cutting-edge technologies forabsorption and reduction of greenhouse gas emissions was also noted by the dean of the Tyumen State University Ivan Romanchuk: "Siberia is a unique territory. In addition to the fact that it is a cluster where the main production of hydrocarbons takes place, there are also a lot of forests, fields, various water bodies and swamps, which, of course, are the sequesters of carbon. But there is a great risk that when swamps are drained or agricultural land is deactivated, carbon will be released again. That's why we need a permanent system for monitoring carbon sequestration. This will be our, among others, big gold mine later, after the hydrocarbons have been harvested.
The opening of the carbon test site, the first in a network of carbon test sites created in Russia under the programme of the Ministry of Education and Science, took place recently. The polygon is in a unique location, the Guzeneevo Nature Reserve. Various technologies can be tested there. This includes soil and water biota and the role of plants in carbon sequestration. We will be practising practically the whole arsenal of what scientists call biogeochemical carbon research at the site.”
At the TNF 2021 TyumSU will sign several agreements with investment companies, research centers and universities. These agreements will be focusing on joint climate projects and projects on carbon deactivation, as well as the development of human capital.
Cooperation agreement between Tyumen State University, Autonomous Nonprofit Organization "Agency for the Development of Scientific and Educational Projects" and GreenEco Investments LLC provides for the implementation of joint research projects, new competitive technologies and products developments, the practical use of the results of joint research and development, as well as personnel training to solve scientific and technological issues in the field of decarbonization of the industrial sector and absorption of greenhouse gases by ecosystems of the Russian Federation.
The agreement is designed to start a new round of green technology development in the region, and the Tyumen Oil and Gas Forum was deliberately chosen for signing as it is a place for direct dialogue between the state, corporations, investment community, small businesses, and educational institutions. It is a space without borders, open to new trends and technologies which brought together more than 3,800 Russian and foreign customers, producers of oil and gas sector to find and implement joint solutions in the energy sector.
GreenEco Investments LLC emphasized the importance of the Tyumen region for the development of its business. A member of the Supervisory Board of GreenEco Investments LLC Igor Kolesnikov has stated: "Tyumen is a key region for us, today we are actively working on pilot projects to implement the best world practices in the field of forest management, as well as working on reducing emissions at oil refineries.
Decarbonization is one of the most science-intensive industries, so we cooperate with Tyumen State University to jointly implement environmental monitoring technologies".