Are you looking for an opportunity to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from your industrial process, or oil and gas activities by capturing those emissions to be permanently stored underground?
If you have answered yes to these questions the CSS method
may be suitable for your business.
The carbon capture and storage (CCS) method is designed to incentivise projects that involve capturing greenhouse gases that would have been released to the atmosphere and transporting them for injection into underground geological formations for permanent storage.
documentasset:CCS Simple Method Guide – which provides a step-by-step guide on how to register, run and report on a CCS project.
All CCS projects will:
You must read and understand the method and other legislative requirements to conduct a CCS project and earn Australian carbon credit units (ACCUs). This includes:
The crediting period is the period of time a project can apply to claim ACCUs.
Under the method, all projects will have a 25-year crediting period.
The CCS method allows a longer period between project registration and the crediting period starting than many other methods. For the carbon capture and storage method, this period is up to 5 years.
Relevant section of the Act:
Relevant section of the Method:
Relevant section of the Rule
There are general eligibility requirements in the Act, which include:
The CCS method requires that a project involve a new greenhouse gas source. For greenhouse gases generated from an industrial process, this will be a new greenhouse gas capture point. For greenhouse gases extracted from a new hydrocarbon field, this will be a new hydrocarbon field.
There is a substitute newness provision in section 11 of the CCS method replacing the standard provision set out in the Act that allows projects to:
Projects under the method are also required to submit a CCS project plan when registering their project. A CCS project plan’s purpose is to outline how the project will be undertaken and needs to include:
It is a requirement of the CCS method that the project proponent take reasonable steps to implement or oversee the implementation of the project in accordance with a CCS project plan.
A CCS project involves capturing, transporting and injecting greenhouse gases into geological storage sites for permanent storage. These greenhouse gases would have otherwise been released into the atmosphere.
Projects must be operated under either the Commonwealth’s
Offshore Petroleum and Greenhouse Gas Storage Act 2006 or a law or legislative framework that meets the criteria to be a recognised law of a State or Territory, as set out in section 5 of the CCS method. Under the definition of recognised law of a State or Territory, the law or legislative framework must require:
These criteria are to provide assurance that the regulatory framework whether specifically for CCS or not, is sufficiently robust to ensure the safety and permanence of the stored greenhouse gases. The method notes that the following state-based laws are recognised laws of a State or Territory:
Relevant sections of the Method:
The CCS method notes 2 related activities that are excluded from creating abatement under the method:
Abatement is calculated by working out the net abatement amount, which is the amount of relevant greenhouse gases captured at each capture point reduced by:
The project proponent may apply to have the withheld ACCUs returned to them following the completion of the site closure process required by the relevant regulatory body. This generally occurs when the site operating licence is surrendered to the appropriate regulatory body after injection has ceased and the regulatory body is satisfied that the greenhouse gases have been permanently stored and the site can be closed. The number of ACCUs refunded is reduced for any storage site fugitive and monitoring emissions that have occurred since the end of the crediting period. The project proponent has 25 years from the end of the crediting period to apply for the withheld ACCUs. If the site is not closed by this time, the withheld ACCUs can no longer be applied for.
Relevant sections of the Rule:
In addition to the reporting requirements of the Act and the Rule, the method also sets out the following method-specific requirements for offset reports and these specify requirements during the crediting period and requirements during the extended accounting period. The extended accounting period is the period from the end of the 25-year crediting period until site closure (as required by the relevant regulatory body) or when a further 25 years has passed, whichever occurs earlier.
Additional reporting requirements during the crediting period include:
Additional reporting requirement during the extended accounting period include:
Relevant section of the Rule:
In addition to the general monitoring requirements of the Act, CCS projects must meet specific monitoring requirements in the method. Section 36 of the method lists these requirements and section 37 sets out requirements if a project proponent fails to monitor a parameter and allows the proponent to make a conservative estimate based on relevant data in some circumstances. The project proponent must take steps to minimise the time period for which an estimate is used.
See the record keeping requirements of the Act and the Rule.
Audits are an important requirement of the Emissions Reduction Fund and provide assurance over the integrity of ACCUs. All projects receive an audit schedule when the project is declared and must provide audit reports according to this schedule. A minimum of 3 audits will be scheduled, however, due to the likely volume of abatement generated by projects under the CCS method, it is likely that additional audit reports will need to be undertaken.
For example, all offsets reports where the report for a period claims more than 100,000 t CO2-e of abatement must be accompanied by an audit report.
For more information on the audit requirements, see the Act, the Rule and the audit information on our website.
The CCS method was made by the Minister in October 2021.
For information on public consultation and consideration of the method by the Emissions Reduction Assurance Committee (ERAC), visit the
CCS method page on the Department of Industry, Resources, Environment and Energy’s consultation hub.
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