Co-generation, Ethanol Production and CO2 Enhanced Oil Recovery
Model for Environmentally and Economically Sound Linked Energy Systems

Kansas Geological Survey
Open-file Report 2002-6

Co-generation, Ethanol Production and CO2 Enhanced Oil Recovery:
Model for Environmentally and Economically Sound Linked Energy Systems

Martin K. Dubois, Scott W. White and Timothy R. Carr
AAPG 2002, Houston Texas
Kansas Geological Survey, University of Kansas, Lawrence, KS 66047


An electrical co-generation, ethanol fuel production and carbon dioxide (CO2) enhanced oil recovery (EOR) project in central Kansas is a unique scalable model for linked energy systems. Waste heat from a 15-megawatt gas-fired turbine municipal generator provides heat inputs for a 25 million gallon per year ethanol plant. Carbon dioxide, a fermentation process byproduct of ethanol production, will be utilized by a CO2 miscible flood demonstration project. Efficiencies gained in byproduct utilization and energy use by linking traditional and alternative energy systems enhance the economics of each while creating environmental benefits through geologic sequestration of CO2.

The Kansas project is the first to use CO2 emissions from ethanol production in an EOR project. The full CO2 stream from this single ethanol plant could supply a small commercial project capable of producing five million barrels of oil and sequestering 1.5 million tons of CO2 over twenty years. Currently the U.S. ethanol industry is directly, or indirectly, releasing five million tons of CO2 per year to the atmosphere. However, ethanol production (and associated CO2 emissions) is projected to double by the year 2005 as ethanol replaces MTBE as a gasoline oxygenate. Through linked systems of power generation, ethanol production and CO2 enhanced oil recovery, opportunities exist for “value added” geologic CO2 sequestration. Strategically locating and scaling “Kansas models” near CO2 EOR target reservoirs that are distant from traditional geologic CO2 sources could add significant EOR reserves throughout the U.S., strengthen the ethanol industry and cost-effectively sequester Co2.

CO2 Miscible Flood Demonstration Project

The CO2 miscible flood demonstration project represents the first use of CO2 for enhanced oil recovery in Kansas and the goal is to demonstrate the technical feasibility of the process in a major Kansas reservoir. The Hall-Gurney Field, the largest L-KC oil field in Kansas, is one of several CO2 flood candidate fields in central Kansas. Partners in the project include the U.S. Department of Energy, MV Energy LLC, Kinder-Morgan CO2, ICM, Inc., the University of Kansas (Kansas Geological Survey and Tertiary Oil Recovery Project) and the Kansas Department of Commerce.

We wish to acknowledge the U.S. Department of Energy for support of this work under the Class Revisited Program Contract # DE-AC26-00BC15124. Project Manager - Daniel Ferguson

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Last updated March 2002