...but they won't receive the bulk of their funding until they hit performance targets, Alberta's Energy Minister, Ken Hughes, said the other day.  There is $2.1 billion in grant money available to the two companies, whose projects will have the effect of taking 550,000 vehicles off the road annually.  “As we have seen there were two projects of the four that for their own idiosyncratic reasons did not proceed and not one penny of government funds went to either one of those projects,” the Minister told the public accounts committee.  The projects will begin storing carbon dioxide at a rate of 1.5 million tonnes a year in 2015, but will ramp up to 2.76 million tonnes by 2016 and hit three million tonnes by 2020, Hughes said.

There are two projects remaining:

Energy Inc.Alberta Carbon Trunk Line —  Enhance Energy is constructing a carbon pipeline to carry waste gases to aging oilfields where it can be used to enhance the recovery of crude oil.  Normally only only 15 to 20 per cent of oil in those reserves could be extracted using current technology.  The Minister remarked, “enhanced oil recovery using C02 can add another stream of production over time. As a result, this adds great value ... and further royalties for Alberta.”

Shell’s Quest project will capture greenhouse gases from its Scotford upgrader northeast of Edmonton and inject them in a salt formation 80 kilometres north of the plant.

More than $21 million was allocated in the 2012-13 budget to the two surviving projects, but that money is refundable if the projects don’t proceed.