California may see its first geologic carbon sequestration project in Kern County in a few years. Clean Energy Systems is planning to build a 50 MW natural-gas fired power plant at its Kimberlina facility in that county. It would employ an \u201coxy combustor\u201d that would allow the company to capture the carbon dioxide and sell it for use in enhanced oil recovery in surrounding petroleum fields. \u201cWe\u2019re in active business development,\u201d said Keith Pronske, Clean Energy Systems president. \u201cWe view Kimberlina as a platform for various technologies.\u201d Clean Energy Systems\u2019 existing Kimberlina facility consists of a 5 MW oxy combustor unit that the company built with the help of both the California Energy Commission and U.S. Department of Energy as a concept project. The oxy combustor--similar to a rocket engine--burns clean gaseous fuels in the presence of oxygen and water to create steam and carbon dioxide. The combustor exhaust then drives a turbine to create power. The water is then condensed out of the turbine exhaust, allowing the CO2 to be captured. The company hopes to be able to pipe and sell the CO2 to oil operators in the county for use in re-pressurizing wells to squeeze out more petroleum. Kimberlina is named as a promising venue for geologic carbon sequestration in a California Energy Commission report, Geologic Carbon Sequestration Strategies for California. The report, released September 21, estimated that California could potentially store 3,563 million metric tons of CO2 in old oil fields, using almost all of the gas to help pump more oil out of wells. That is the equivalent of about all of the greenhouse gases emitted by California power plants in 76 years at today\u2019s rate. California already has 25,000 wells used to inject water, steam, and gas into oil and gas fields, many of which are used for enhanced oil recovery. Many also lie near major population centers where power plants are located. Additional CO2 storage potential exists in saline aquifers in porous sedimentary basins, where the report estimated that up to an additional 300,000 million metric tons of CO2 eventually could be stored. However, the report noted that capturing CO2 is expensive, ranging between about $50 to $90 per metric ton. Yet, because enhanced oil recovery operations pay as much as $20 per metric ton for CO2, power plants and other point source industrial facilities located close to old fields could recover part of their carbon capture costs, according to the report. \u201cWe\u2019re trying to find economies of scale,\u201d said Pronske. Ultimately, the most economic geologic carbon sequestration operation will involve power plants that use carbon rich feedstocks, such as coal, petroleum coke, or biomass, he explained. After completing its initial natural gas plant at Kimberlina, Pronske said the company hopes to add facilities that will burn such solid fuels in an oxy combustor and capture and sequester the resulting CO2. CEC plans to hold a meeting on its report on October 1. Editors\u2019 note: For a more detailed version of this geologic carbon sequestration story, please see our sister publication E=MC2 \u2013 Energy Meets Climate Challenge. You can find it at www.energymeetsclimate.com.