The Geological Potential of the Arabian Plate for CCS and CCUS - An Overview

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


Given allowable carbon emissions for reaching climate targets, CCS and CCUS are without alternatives to simultaneously maintain a supply of sufficient energy for the world and preventing stranded subsurface assets for hydrocarbon producing countries. Permanent storage of carbon dioxide (CO2) in deep subsurface formations is acknowledged as a scalable and achievable technology to contribute to the ongoing efforts of limiting CO2 emissions and possibly lead to the use of stored CO2 for geothermal energy generation. The sequestration processes include entrapping CO2 in saline aquifers and hydrocarbon reservoirs in its mobile phase and in basalts as carbonate minerals. So, what are then the geological subsurface opportunities in Arabia for CO2 sequestration? A high level assessment has been conducted to identify geological formations suitable for storing and utilizing CO2 on a large scale. Over the Arabian peninsula four significantly different geological terrains are likely suitable for CCS & CCUS: (1) An Eastern section of stacked Mesozoic aquifers along the coast and inland of the Arabian Gulf, (2) rift basins with deep saline aquifers along the Red Sea, (3) Cenozoic volcanic rocks inland of the Red Sea coast, and Proterozoic ultramafic rocks in the Arabian Shield, and (4) a fringe of Cretaceous obducted marine crust (ophiolites) in Northeastern Oman and the UAE.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 15th Greenhouse Gas Control Technologies Conference
PublisherElsevier BV
StatePublished - Apr 9 2021

Bibliographical note

KAUST Repository Item: Exported on 2021-12-18
Acknowledgements: We thank members of the CO2 and geothermal working groups at KAUST for valuable input and discussions, in particular KAUST Faculty Martin Mai and Thomas Finkbeiner, Dr. Jakub Fedorik, Miliausha Petrova, and Eduardo Torres. Sarima Vahrenkamp and Michael Oyinloye are thanked and acknowledged for their contribution to carbon data collation and evaluation. The research is funded by baseline support to KAUST faculty Vahrenkamp, Afifi and Hoteit.


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