At Repsol we want to play an important role in the fight against climate change by improving the sustainability and efficiency of our products and industrial processes, as well as by promoting the development of new low-emissions energy businesses. At the Repsol Technology Lab, we employ innovation and technology to achieve these goals.
Our researchers search for solutions throughout our entire value chain in order to make our businesses more efficient and competitive. We also explore ways to reduce the impact of CO2 by reusing it in the creation of new materials and in order to reduce its impact on the environment.
We believe that technology is the driving force in the energy transition, whose objective is to meet energy demand without increasing the emissions that impact climate change.
For this reason, at the Repsol Technology Lab we are working to reduce the emissions of our production processes and develop methods for reusing the C02 that has been emitted into the atmosphere. Carbon Capture, Use, and Storage (CCUS) technology involves the capture of carbon dioxide (CO2), its transport via ships or pipelines, and its eventual use as a resource to create valuable products or services. This technology will play a key role in our objective of achieving net zero emissions by 2050.
We are developing technologies to convert CO2 for its use as a raw material with a wide range of opportunities, ranging from the synthesis of polymers and the creation of new chemicals, to its incorporation into construction materials, therefore transforming CO2 from a problem into a solution.
This activity requires expert knowledge in catalyst design, processes, products, and applications. CCUS is a budding technology that is strongly supported by EU Directives as a way to achieve CO2 reduction objectives.
Carbon capture can be applied on a large scale to many production processes, including coal and gas power generation, natural gas processing, and fertilizer production, as well as in other industrial sectors such as cement, iron and steel, paper, and petroleum refining.
At the Repsol Technology Lab we are developing new separation methods with the goal of reducing costs and facilitating the large-scale commercial deployment of CCUS.
Geological storage consists of injecting captured CO2 into rock formations deep underground. Suitable land for CO2 storage must have rocks with certain porous and permeable characteristics, as well as upper barriers that serve as seals for containing the CO2 permanently.
We are collaborating in the development of tools such as the Society of Petroleum Engineers' Storage Resource Management System (SRMS), which provides guidelines on how to classify CO2 storage resources and evaluates storage maturity levels for consideration in these projects.
We have created a new system for using solar energy to obtain renewable hydrogen, therefore reducing the carbon footprint of this process by more than 90% compared to conventional processes for obtaining the gas.
This initiative is an example of how the Repsol Technology Lab collaborates with other companies. In 2018 we signed an agreement with Enagás to continue jointly developing this technology, which could play a fundamental role in the energy transition. Other entities that participate in this development phase are the Catalonia Institute for Energy Research (IREC), the University of Alicante, the Aragon Hydrogen Foundation, and Magrana.
Currently it is estimated that 20% of the CO2 emissions in refining processes is associated with the generation of hydrogen, a component that allows us to improve the technical and environmental quality of our products. To this end, we are developing low emissions technologies like photoelectrocatalysis, which allows for the production of green hydrogen through solar energy.
Our researchers are also working to reduce refineries' emissions of methane. Minimizing these emissions is fundamental for establishing natural gas, which has low levels of carbon, as a key energy source in the energy transition.
Expert in CO2 capture technologies
"Engineering enables technological solutions that, through sustainable production, we can bring closer to society."
Jacobo Canal Vila
International Doctorate in Civil Engineering
"CCUS is a combination of technologies that will enable the industry to achieve its ambitious goal of net zero emissions."
Jordi Pedrola Vidal
Expert in CO2 storage
"CCUS technologies are a key element for complying with the Paris Agreement's emissions reduction commitment."
Luisa María Fraga
Doctorate in Chemistry
"Only a company that makes sustainability a part of each of its decisions and actions could reasonably foresee its future."
The fight against climate change has become such an important challenge that those in the energy sector decided to join forces to form one large partnership called the Oil & Gas Climate Initiative (OGCI). This voluntary, industry-led initiative is headed by CEOs from some of the largest energy companies in the world who want to lead the sector's response to the threat of climate change.
Among the main focuses of the OGCI is the implementation of CCUS (Carbon Capture, Use, and Storage) and the investment in companies and startups that are developing these technologies through its OGCI Climate Investments fund, which was created in 2016.
An initiative launched by the private sector, research centers, and Spanish universities, whose mission is to boost the development and implementation of Carbon Capture, Use and Storage (CCUS) technologies, with the aim of Spain meeting its commitment to reduce emissions and achieve a CO2 sector that's cost-effective and competitive.
The Spanish Technology Platform for Sustainable Chemistry, a public-private partnership led by the industry and which includes the participation of all the chemical sector agencies. It encourages cooperation and the exchange of knowledge and experiences in the field of sustainable chemistry. This association boosts the chemical sector's circular economy with the capture and reuse of CO2 being one of its main projects.
Gas flares serve as a safety mechanism at hydrocarbon plants. Their function is to eliminate gases and fluids through controlled burning to eliminate the risks involved with having to store the gases locally or releasing them directly into the atmosphere.
The World Bank's Zero Routine Flaring initiative is committed to finding viable solutions to minimize routine flaring no later than 2030.
We are the first energy company to commit to achieving net zero emissions by 2050, in line with climate objectives set by the Paris Agreement and the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals.