New Geoscience BC Collaboration to Help Guide Carbon Storage Decisions in Central and Northern BC

Vancouver, BC – January 16, 2024 – A new Geoscience BC geological carbon capture and storage (CCS) project will assess potential for storing carbon emissions in parts of central and northern British Columbia. The project will provide essential public and foundational geological research needed to inform a transition to a net-zero emissions economy.

Geoscience BC is bringing together a consortium of government, industry and other partners for the first phase of a Central Interior Geological CCS Assessment program. The project will compile existing geoscience information on the extensive Nechako Basin, focusing south-southwest of Prince George and providing carbon sequestration insights along the Highway 16 corridor west to Houston, BC.

The area hosts some current greenhouse gas (GHG) emitters and has the potential for new technologies such as hydrogen production that require future carbon storage. This supports an economic development plan to develop Prince George as a ‘hydrogen hub’.

The Central Interior Geological CCS Assessment program will identify and quantify potential carbon storage options, delivering a publicly available atlas to inform decisions and help diversify northern and central BC’s natural resource economy.

Current research funders are the Ministry of Energy, Mines and Low Carbon Innovation, Enbridge, Foresight Canada’s BC Net Zero Innovation Network and Geoscience BC. Geoscience BC continues to seek additional support.

Minister of Energy, Mines and Low Carbon Innovation Josie Osborne said: “B.C. is a leader in creating sustainable energy solutions, and Geoscience BC’s project provides the research we need to continue moving towards a low-carbon future. Carbon capture, utilization and storage are expected to play a key role to help us transition to a net-zero emissions economy, while providing good jobs for people and protecting our environment.”

Canadian Hydrogen Fuel Cell Association Regional Director for Western Canada and Executive Director for Hydrogen BC Matthew Klippenstein said: “The Canadian Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Association and its provincial affiliate Hydrogen BC congratulate Geoscience BC on its new collaboration. An atlas of central and northern British Columbia’s carbon sequestration potential will help scale up low-carbon and even carbon-negative solutions on the path to a net-zero economy.”

City of Prince George Mayor Simon Yu said: "Prince George continues to support sustainable industrial development so we are very excited to partner on this project with Geoscience BC. The carbon storage potential of the Nechako Basin may not only create an opportunity to diversify our economy, create good jobs, and support the emergence of low-carbon fuel sector, but it could help significantly contribute to the net-zero economy we’re striving to achieve.”

Enbridge Cynthia Hansen, Enbridge’s Executive Vice President and President of Gas Transmission and Midstream, said: “This important work will play a key role in advancing carbon capture and storage opportunities in B.C. It is critical that we evaluate and develop carbon capture and storage projects to lower greenhouse gas emissions.”

First Nations Climate Initiative facilitator Alex Grzybowski said: “It is essential that First Nations are at the leading edge of investigation of potential opportunities on their lands particularly those that may be part of a decarbonized future. As this study plan develops the Nations who hold title to those lands that could be investigated need to play a leadership role in the work and management of the resulting data and opportunities that may emerge.”

Foresight Canada CEO Jeanette Jackson said: "Reaching British Columbia's net zero goals requires collaboration at an unprecedented scale. Integrated research projects like this are critical to identifying the partners, testing sites, and resources available to begin adopting the innovative technologies that will transform BC's economy into a resilient future economy. I am excited to be working with these partners to accelerate our path to net zero in Central and Northern BC in the form of carbon sequestration."

Geoscience BC Manager, Energy and Water, Randy Hughes said: "It is encouraging that the Nechako Basin, in proximity to infrastructure and sites emitting high levels of greenhouse gases, has good reservoir characteristics. This initial CCS assessment will provide industry, communities and Indigenous groups with data to inform their clean energy decisions as they transition to a net-zero emissions economy.”


Accessing information

To view project information, visit the project page or view the project area on Geoscience BC's Earth Science Viewer online mapping application.

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About Geoscience BC

Geoscience BC's independent, public geoscience is a first link in the supply chain for Canada's net-zero emissions economy.

Our critical minerals and metals, cleaner energy and geological carbon capture and storage research is funded by industry, government and other partners. It informs evidence-based decisions by industry, governments, Indigenous groups and communities.

Geoscience BC is guided by a volunteer Board of Directors, technical and Indigenous volunteers and by Geoscience BC members. We are a not-for-profit society incorporated under the BC Societies Act.

We gratefully acknowledge the financial support of our partners, including the Province of British Columbia through the Ministry of Energy, Mines and Low Carbon Innovation.

Visit or follow us @GeoscienceBC to find out more.


For more information, please contact:

Richard Truman

Geoscience BC

604-662-4147 / 778-929-1662