When Occidental Petroleum announced last year plans to build the world’s largest direct-air capture (DAC) plant smack dab in the Permian, it marked a bold move for an independent oil and gas producer to develop a low-carbon business on a grand scale. And at least one large investor was listening in the form of Berkshire Hathaway, which has since upped its ownership stake in Oxy to 23.6%. Unconventional energy ventures are starting to sprout across the fossil fuels industry, and not just from the Exxons and Chevrons.
Reese Energy Consulting today is following the latest on this topic from Okla. City-based Devon and its $10 million inaugural investment in Fervo Energy’s geothermal technology. Houston-based Fervo employs horizontal drilling, multi-stage completion, and fiber optic cables downhole to identify and tap geothermal reservoirs, then converts that energy to electricity. The company is the first of its kind to successfully drill and complete a horizontal well pair for commercial geothermal production and can drill multiple wells from a single location.
Oxy meanwhile has leased 400 sq. miles of land in Texas and La., to develop up to five carbon storage hubs. Once completed in 2025, its DAC plant will capture up to 500,000 metric tons of CO2 per year scalable to 1 million. The company is also in the design stage on a second DAC in Texas and has plans for 50 more across the two states. Only 18 DAC plants currently operate across the globe, capturing a combined 0.01 metric tons of carbon per year.