Det Norske Veritas (DNV) has developed the world’s first guideline for the transmission of carbon dioxide (CO2), giving pipeline operators a unified set of standards for the safe transport of the greenhouse gas.

The guidelines are an important step forward in the development of a regulatory environment for companies developing carbon capture and storage (CCS) technology. They were developed by a DNV-led industry partnership, which included major energy firms as well as government representatives.

DNV says that the guideline is an extension of existing pipeline standards, and provides criteria for the development, design, construction, testing, operation and maintenance of steel pipelines. “The guideline also builds on the continuously increasing scientific and industrial knowledge of the technical difference between the transmission of large volumes of CO2 in pipelines and the transmission of hydrocarbons,” says head of carbon capture and storage at DNV, Frøydis Eldevik.

Companies involved in the year-long project to develop the guidelines include ArcelorMittal, BP, Chevron, Dong Energy, Gassco, Gassnova, ILF, Petrobras, Shell, StatoilHydro and Vattenfall. The industry collaboration, which also included the UK’s Health and Safety Executive, the State Supervision of Mines in the Netherlands and the Petroleum Safety Authority in Norway, will go on to close gaps in technology and knowledge identified in the guideline, says DNV.

The guideline applies to new offshore and onshore pipelines for the transportation of CO2-rich fluids, the conversion of existing pipelines, the pipeline transportation of CO2 captured from hydrocarbon streams and from anthropogenic CO2, the pipeline transportation of natural sources for enhanced oil recovery, and to other larger scale transportation of CO2.

Gaseous, liquid and dense phase operation conditions are also included.

The guideline will be turned into a DNV Recommended Practice and made publicly available as soon as possible.