De Kalb, Miss. -The Kemper County Energy Facility is nearing completion, with hundreds of construction workers on-site and Mississippi Power, the developers of the plant say they are on track with a May 2015 operation date. The plant, which will capture 65 percent of the CO2 from the 582-megawatt gasification power plant is planning to begin capturing CO2 at the gasification plant this fall. Kemper could open the door for CO2 capture with countries like Poland and India with low-rank coals, by lowering costs for the second generation of plants. If TRIG and its attached capture unit work well, it also could help similar plants "blossom in China."
San Francisco- NRG Energy and Japan's JX Nippon on July 15 announced plans to capture carbon emissions from NRG's WA Parish power plant and use the pollution to boost oil production at the West Ranch Oil Field.
Washington D.C.-Carbon dioxide is best known as a pollutant, a greenhouse gas notorious for its contributions to climate change, but it can also be a valuable commodity. Companies have been using naturally-occurring carbon dioxide for decades to force more oil out of the ground after they have retrieved all they can with pumps and by injecting water or gas. But as those natural formations of carbon are depleted, oil producers have started looking to commercial sources that capture and sell their carbon emissions.This has created a oppurtunity for CO2 enhanced oil recovery, an option that could make carbon capture a regular practice in the power or industrial sectors
San Antonio -Instead of letting carbon dioxide escape from the plant and contribute to global warming, Jones’s Skyonic Corp. is spending $128 million to convert the gas into baking soda and hydrochloric acid that can be sold to the cattle and oil industries. John Thompson of Clean Air Task Force says what is significant about Skyonic is that they are going commercial with it, they will make money with it, and that gets them to the next stage of development.
Washington D.C. -Utilities are shifting to coal as gas moves to a four-year high. Coal is the fastest growing energy source in the world, driven by China's indsutrial growth.
Washington D.C.-EPA's new carbon pollution standards on new coal plants meets controversy from some environmentalists and industry. EPA says the rule sends a clear signal that CCS is the future of new coal technology and is the best way to cut emissions from coal plants.
Washington D.C.- EPA's new regulations on new coal plants rests heavily on the success of carbon capture and storage technologies. Supporters of the new rules say the regulations will spur companies to develop and implement CCS technologies on new coal plants, eventually making CCS competitive with wind and natural gas.
Washington D.C. -The EPA will strictly limit the amount of carbon dioxide emissions on new coal-fired power plants. These limits will make it difficult for any new coal plant to be built without CCS technology. With China and India building dozens of new coal plants at an accelerated rate, the development of CCS technology serves the world's interests.
China-In China, carbon capture and storage (CCS) is widely recognized as the most important technology to achieve a deep cut in CO2 emissions. China plays an important role in the cost reduction and development of key low-carbon technologies. China has significantly lower labor costs, the availability of skilled engineers and a fast timeline in developing infrastructure projects. A number of projects in China have started to test CO2 injection, but there is still a lack of a regulatory framework and studies on risk mitigation and financial risk transfer for storage activities.
Mississippi- Southern Company's CEO Tom Fanning, defended Plant Ratcliffe's cost overruns of $540M and defended the project as a long-term investment for Southern Company.
Illinois- Clean Air Task Force attended the public forum on the FutureGen 2.0 Environmental Impact Study (EIS) in Jacksonville, IL this past Tuesday, May 21. A copy of CATF's preliminary comments on the EIS for the project can be found here.
England- The two preferred bidders in the UK’s £1bn Carbon Capture and Storage Commercialization Program Competition were recently announced. The two preferred bidders are the Peterhead Project in Aberdeenshire, Scotland, and the White Rose Project in Yorkshire, England. The two preferred bidders were selected following a period of intensive commercial negotiations with four projects shortlisted from an original eight in October 2012.
Mississippi- Mississippi Power and state regulators reached an agreement on Jan. 24 that will allow MS Power to file for a $172 million rate increase this year to help pay for Plant Ratcliffe, a 482 MW IGCC facility.
Beijing- Beijing has been cloaked in smog since Friday, and local government warned residents to stay indoors after pollution readings hit record rates late on Saturday. Though the government has temporarily shut down factories and forced vehicles off the road, more comprehensive solutions are required in order to address the root causes of the pollution like coal-burning factories.
Canada- On Friday Canada allowed the Chinese state-run oil giant, CNOOC, to move forward with a $15 billion takeover of the Canadian domestic energy company, Nexen. The deal is the latest effort by the Chinese government to find new sources of oil and natural gas reserves.
Alberta- The approval of the North West Redwater Partnership’s bitumen refinery proved a major milestone for Enhance Energy's Alberta Carbon Trunk Line (ACTL). The 240 km pipeline is one of the first that will use carbon dioxide captured from industrial processes for enhanced oil recovery. The peipeline is set to be completed in 2014 and will capture CO2 from the North West Redwater facility as well as the Agrium Inc. fertilizer plant.
China- Many U.S. companies are looking to China as a testing ground for advanced coal technology. Companies such as Powerspan and Duke Energy are working with companies in China to deploy carbon capture technology.
Texas- Yesterday at th 12th annual U.S.-China Oil & Gas Industry Forum (OGIF) in San Antonio, Texas, Summit Power Group and Sinopec Engineering Group and The Export-Import Bank of China (“Chexim”) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) helping to assure the financing and construction of the Texas Clean Energy Project (TCEP). TCEP is a large-scale commercial polygen coal gasification plant that will capture 90% of its CO2 for use in enhanced oil recovery (EOR) in the Permian Basin.
China Weekly Energy Updates (8/31/2012-9/7/2012)
Calgary, Canada-Shell announced that it will build the first carbon capture and storage, or CCS, project that locks away emissions from mining Canada’s oil sands. The Quest project will be built on behalf of the Athabasca Oil Sands Project joint venture owners (Shell, Chevron and Marathon Oil) and with support from the Governments of Canada and Alberta.
Calgary, Canada-Shell announced that it will build the first carbon capture and storage, or CCS, project that locks away emissions from mining Canada’s oil sands. The Quest project will be built on behalf of the Athabasca Oil Sands Project joint venture owners (Shell, Chevron and Marathon Oil) and with support from the Governments of Canada and Alberta.
New York- GE, a US-based company and Sargas, a Norweigen company, have formed an alliance to sell gas-fired power plants that will capture 90% of the output of carbon dioxide and use the CO2 in depleted oil fields for crude oil recovery.
Washington, D.C.- Last week environmental groups urged EPA to regulate carbon dioxide from exisiting power plants during the May 24 hearing on a proposal to limit carbon dioxide from new fossil fuel-fired units.
Illinois- IL basin coal production is on the rise thanks in part to the advancement of scrubber technology, allowing high-sulphur coal to burn more cleanly.
Indiana- The legal battle on who will pay for the $1.3B cost overruns for the Duke Edwardsport plant was reached on Monday. Duke will pay $700M and Duke's customers will pay a 14.5% rate increase.
Mississippi- The Mississippi Public Service Commission voted 2-1 this past Tuesday to approve the IGCC plant, despite opponent's calls for a fresh look at the projects finances.
USA- A refreshing look at energy policy and the current status of energy technologies around the world.
China Weekly Energy Updates (3/19/2011-3/26/2012)
Australia- Linc Energy hopes to build a UCG project in China with help from an unnamed Chinese investor. The company recently sold some of its coal property to a company in India and acquired oil-producing assets in the US to generate cash flow.
Mississippi- On Thursday, the Mississippi Supreme Court reversed approval for Mississippi Power's Kemper IGCC project. The court said the Mississippi Public Service Commission's May 2010 approval of the project did not satisfy state law that the plant would benefit the utility's customers, and sent the case back to the PSC. The project would use a gasification technology developed by Southern Company to burn Mississippi lignite coal.
Indianapolis- The Indiana Department of Revenue will decide on changes to the tax credit for the southwestern Indiana plant, which will be worth up to $120 million. The tax credit for the Rockport synthetic natural gas plant was initally developed to help create jobs.
Washington D.C.- The National Enhanced Oil Recovery Initiative (NEORI), a coalition of energy companies and environmental groups, released a 36-page report this week that calls for a production tax credit for capturing and transporting carbon dioxide. That would encourage makers of ethanol, natural gas and electricity to tap the carbon dioxide produced in their industrial processes and send it through pipelines to oil wells for enhanced oil recovery.
USA- Domestically, "clean coal" projects are getting knocked around. New technologies will help create jobs and stop climate change, but many wonder if the projects can ever make it to the finish line.
Washington D.C.- Despite differences in energy between the U.S, and China, Vice-President Xi Jinping's visit to DC highlights the necessity for China and the U.S. to cooperate in carbon capture and sequestration technology.
Illinois- The Illinois EPA's draft air permit for the proposed Taylorville Energy Center does not include any kind of emission limits for carbon dioxide. The plant's developer plans to use carbon capture and sequestration (CCS) technologies to capture up to 65% of the project's carbon dioxide emissions, but says that setting strict carbon dioxide emission limits for the plant would ensure its failure.
Texas- DOE announced Wednesday that CPS Energy, a San Antonio based utility, has signed an agreement with the Texas Clean Energy Project (TCEP) to purchase 200MW of power from the plant. The polygen plant will capture 90% of its carbon dioxide emissions and is funded partially by the DOE and Texas state incentives, though financing for the project is still incomplete. The project is expected to be operational by 2015.
Australia- A two-part Global CCSI interview with John Thompson on jumpstarting CCS in the US through collaboration with China and looking to Canada as an example in establishing a CCS nucleus.
China- Quarterly Updates of China Related Energy Issues in 2011:
Illinois- The draft Illinois EPA air permit for the proposed Taylorville Energy Center contains NO provisions to require the plant to actually capture carbon dioxide.The developer of the project claims that limits at this early stage of the technology would interfere with gaining project financing and would jeopardize plant operations. This permit omission is striking. The Clean Air Task Force (CATF) filed comments (located here) on TEC’s air permit on Jan 3, 2012 that identified significant errors and problems. While CATF supports the TEC project because it will pioneer CCS technology, the permit as drafted sets a terrible precedent that harms CCS deployment nationwide
Indiana- State regulators approved the divisive 30 year contract of the coal-to-SNG plant in southwestern Indiana today, overcoming a major hurdle for the proposed plant. The plan entails selling the output of the plant to a state agency, who will then sell the synthetic natural gas to the public on the national market. The plant is set to begin operation in 2015.
Illinois-The Tenaska bill failed to pass the Senate today, but Senate President John Cullerton used a parlimentary procedure that allows the bill to be called back later in the veto session, or next spring.
Illinois- Tenasaka's $3.5B proposal for the IGCC coal plant is heading to the Senate for a second time. The plant's project developers are asking Illinois state legislators to approve the project, which will require state utilites to purchase the plant's output for the next 30 years. The project will capture its 65% of its CO2 emissions.
Saskatchewan- The Boundary Dam project, set to be one of the world's largest CCS demonstration projects, reflects the province's attitude towards being a global leader in carbon capture and storage. SaskPower's Boundary Dam will have a capacity of 115 MW and the carbon dioxide captured will be used for enhanced oil recovery.
Scotland- Plans for the carbon capture project at Longannet have been canceled. It is believed that a failure to reach a deal with the power companies to capture the carbon dioxide emissions and pipeline them to the North Sea led to the failure of the project. Longannet in Fife is one of the country's biggest polluters and had been the only remaining site in the UK government competition for the funding. Labour's energy minister Tom Greatrex hopes that the money that was previously to be used for the carbon storage project will go towards other carbon capture and storage projects.
Canada-Canada pledged to reduce its carbon emissions by 50% in 2008 by 2050, with the government now planning a public education outreach campaign on oil sand carbon capture. Many of the companies involved with CCS projects in Canada are working directly with critics to address concerns and work towards improvement. Four CCS projects are moving forward in Alberta, with both provincial and federal assistance.
Washington D.C.- Despite funding challenges over the past year, CCS projects are still making progress according to the latest Global CCS Institute report released this morning. Though the overall number of large-scale CCS proposals, there are a greater number of initiatives that are under construction or in operation this year.
Washington D.C.- The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has issued a decision along with a signed cooperative agreement – that will allow federal funding to be used to help build one of the world’s most advanced and environmentally clean coal-based power plants. This 400-megawatt, facility combines integrated gasification combined-cycle (IGCC) power generation, urea production, and carbon dioxide (CO2) capture, utilization, and storage (CCUS) technology.
New York- AEP’s decision to shut down its pioneer Mountaineer project is a disappointing setback to the advancement of a CCS industry and climate change mitigation from coal-fired plants. The cancelled project is a direct result of the lack of climate change legislation in Congress.
Illinois- Governor Pat Quinn of IL recently signed into law a bill that would allow a coal-to-synthetic natural gas plant to be built on Chicago's Southside. Quinn stated that added consumer protections to the bill changed his mind about the revised legislation.
Indiana- An Indiana agency that represents utility ratepayers criticized Duke Energy Corp. for the rising costs of its Edwardsport coal gasification plant and says that their review of the company's records raises the question of whether budgetary mismanagement for the plant had occured. Duke originally said the cost of the plant would be about $1.98 billion however project costs were capped at $2.9 billion last September.
China- Last month at a UK-China summit, a 1,000 MW and $1.5-billion commercial partnership began by state-owned China Energy Conservation and Environmental Protection Group, and U.K.-based Seamwell International for an underground coal gasificationsite in Inner Mongolia's Yi He coal field. Drilling will begin later this month in Inner Mongolia to confirm the site's potential and will also assess the risk posed to groundwater.
Indiana- The proposed IGCC plant, located in Edwardsport, IN is currently running about $100M above projections, but Duke Energy has said that it will cap construction costs passed along to customers at $2.72B.
Texas- Summit Energy’s Texas Clean Energy Project, a gasification plant planned for Penwell, was recently awarded $350 million by DOE’s Office of Fossil Energy to develop the project but had no customers lined up until last week, when Texas Clean Energy Project (TCEP) officials signed a memorandum of understanding to supply half that amount to community-owned CPS Energy in San Antonio, from 2014 to 2039. For CPS, the deal is part of an effort to re-market the company as a leader in the “new energy economy". Construction is set to start on the Texas Clean Energy Project later this year.
Texas- The Trailblazer plant located near Sweetwater, TX is nearing the completion of its front end-engineering design (FEED) study for the CO2 capture plant, which will give estimated on the cost of adding carbon capture to the plant. The timeline of construction and operation for the plant is still uncertain, due to both financial restrictions caused in part by the economic recession and lack of federal incentives.
Alabama- The 25MW CCS plant in Alabama will utilize the KM CDR Process developed by Mitsubishi Heavy Industries and Kansai Electric Power. The facility has been attached to a coal-fired plant owned by Alabama Power, a subsidiary of Southern Company.
Mississippi- Construction of the proposed IGCC plant, to be operated by Mississippi Power, is set to be both on project and on budget. The project was approved by the MS Public Service Commission last year. Costs for the project are capped at $2.8B.
Illinois- The coal to SNG plant, to be located on Chicago’s Southeast side is awaiting Gov. Pat Quinn’s signature. The plant, owned by Leucadia National, plans will chemically convert coal and refinery waste to synthetic natural gas, which will then be piped into natural gas pipelines to heat Illinois homes.
Illinois- The Illinois House and Senate have sent legislation back to the governor that would require utility companies to buy the synthetic natural gas at a set rate over a ten year period for the Power Holdings coal gasification plant in Jefferson County. Governor Quinn vetoed the original legislation but indications are there will be a different outcome this time. Legislation for the Leucadia Chicago plant is also back on the Governor’s desk.
Alaska- Cook Inlet Region Inc. (CIRI) has been working on core drilling for the past two winter seasons and now has enough data to begin development of a three-dimensional geological model of the underground coal resource. Some of the wells that will be drilled next winter will be left open for monitoring and data gathering, which will be used during the permitting process for the UCG project.
Pakistan- By May 15, the UCG plant would start producing five megawatts of energy through gasification, and power generation would gradually be increased to 50MW.
Estevan- SaskPower's Boundary Dam generating station will be the world's largest commercial-scale application of CCS technology (CCS) project of its kind and is set to capture a million tonnes of carbon dioxide a year.
Indiana- The proposed plant, owned by Indiana Gasification LLC, a subsidiary of Leucadia National Corporation, is working on the environmental permitting process, one of three major steps the plant will need to take before it breaks ground. The plant is set to start construction in 2012.
Indiana- An eminent domain bill for a carbon dioxide pipeline was passed in the Indiana House this past week. The bill, which would pipeline the carbon dioxide from the future Rockport gasification plant project, will move back to the Senate where a final version will be decided on.
Illinois- Gov. Pat Quinn vetoed a bill that would have established two synthetic natural gas plants in Illinois on Monday. The bill would have forced state utilities to buy the synthetic natural gas made from Illinois coal, which would’ve been passed on to Illinois ratepayers.
Illinois- A bill to build a proposed coal-to-SNG plant located on the far Southeast Side of Chicago is currently sitting on Governor Pat Quinn’s desk and would supply Chicago customers with substitute natural gas made from Illinois coal. The proposed plant would be built by Chicago Clean Energy (a wholly-owned subsidiary of Leucadia National Corp.) and the company has said that the plant would save customers at least $100 million over 30 years compared with the price of conventional natural gas. Legislation would require the Leucadia plant to capture at least 85 percent of its carbon emissions or face fines of up to $20 million a year.
Indiana- Duke Energy recently proposed a lower customer-rate increase to fund the construction of the electric and natural-gas utility's Edwardsport power plant project. Duke wants to cap the project's construction costs to be passed along to customers at $2.72 billion, which would be exclusive of financing costs.
Kentucky- Kentucky lawmakers passed legislation that gives eminent domain rights to carbon dioxide pipelines on Tuesday. The proposal will now move on to Gov. Steve Beshear. The bill will give private companies access across private property to develop pipelines for carbon dioxide.
Illinois- The Willow Grove Project in northern Fayette County is waiting on a decision expected in the next few days on whether the project will be selected for participation in the FutureGen Project. The county is hoping that they will be the selected site for storage of carbon dioxide deep underground for the FutureGen Project.
Texas- John Thompson, director of the Coal Transition Project at the Clean Air Task Force was in Austin, TX this past week to address a conference on carbon capture and climate change on the opportunities for Texas and China to combine on carbon capture and sequestration technology.
Australia- Cougar Energy’s bid to establish an underground coal gasification plant in Kingaroy ended this past Friday when the Queensland Government put a stop to the plant, citing that the company failed to prove that the project wouldn’t environmentally harm the traditionally agricultural area.
Indiana- The timetable, recently approved by the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission, sets the final hearing for approval of the 2.65 B gasification plant for May 3 with a final decision on the plant to likely come around Labor Day. Several lawyers have questioned the timing of the timetable, saying it leaves too little time for public feedback.
Calgary- What started as pesky problems for a rural Saskatchewan couple has now raised the question of safety regarding carbon capture and sequestration. The couple noticed algae cones, dead animals and foam coming out of the ground on their property. The couple believes that carbon dioxide has begun to seep out of their property, but some scientists and the company Consenvus Energy Inc is unsure, saying it is unclear whether the carbon dioxide coming out of the ground and the carbon dioxide injected is a match.
Indiana- The Indiana Finance Authority (IFA) has voted unanimously to approve a 2.65 billion substitute natural gas plant in Rockport, Indiana. The proposed SNG plant will operate with 99% fewer pollutants then a traditional coal plant and will be designed to capture 90% of its carbon dioxide. If the plant is approved by the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission construction will take place from 2012-2015.
Texas- 600MW Tenaska Trailblazer project in Sweetwater, TX will be the first new-built carbon capture plant to receive air-quality permits, a requirement for construction of the new plant. The technology at the plant will capture 80-90% of the plants’ carbon dioxide and will increase Permian Basin oil production in West Texas.
Illinois- The Illinois House initially rejected the proposal for the clean energy plant backed by Tenaska Energy but supporters brought it back for a second vote that was approved Tuesday night. The plant will turn high-sulfur Illinois coal into electricity and store the emissions underground. The proposal will now move to the Senate.
Washington- State regulators are contemplating low-carbon technologies and are trying to determine if the likelihood of federal climate legislation warrants the high costs of implementing clean-coal technologies. Investors and companies are presenting technologies like IGCC to public service commissions, who must decide whether the benefits of emission cuts and CCS outweigh the costs. However, deciding the impact of future climate legislation that isn’t currently enacted is hard for commissions to do, especially because they are required to choose the most low-cost option.
Indiana- The agreement today between Indiana Duke Energy, Indiana Utility Consumer Counselor, and industrial groups caps customer costs of the proposed Indiana coal gasification plant and shows a road map for consumer and investor cost recovery. The plant is scheduled to be operational in 2012 and will use IGCC technology to gasify coal and strip pollutants. It is one of the largest construction projects ever undertaken in Indiana.
West Virginia- DOE Secretary Chu visited West Virginia this past Wednesday and joined Senator Jay Rockefeller in a panel discussion where they both discussed the necessity of developing new coal technologies and agreed that more time and money should be spent on supporting and developing carbon capture and storage sequestration. Chu says that developing US’s CCS technologies may be an opportunity to export it to the world, and that China is already viewing CCS as an economic opportunity.
Florida- Tampa Electric will partner with RTI International to build a pilot project that will demonstrate the technology to remove sulfur and capture and sequester CO2 from Tampa Electric’s Polk Power 250MW IGCC power plant. The project is part of a U.S. Department of Energy funded demonstration project and will sequester 300,000 tons of CO2 more then 5,000 feet below the Polk Power Station. The project hopes to complete construction in 2013.
Illinois- The Illinois Commerce Commission report released this week casts doubt on the future Tenaska clean coal plant, stating that the proposed plant has significant costs and uncertain future benefits for taxpayers. Though the report makes no recommendation regarding future action for the Tenaska plant, it will be forwarded to the General Assembly where legislation will be enabled before construction can begin. Tenaska plans to move forward with the project, contingent on the state's approval.
Washington- The study acknowledges carbon capture and sequestration feasibility and recognizes the need for climate legislation, but does not go into specifics of the next steps to widespread deployment of CCS. The report also acknowledges that the legal liabilities of CCS need to addressed and that demonstration plants are essential to CCS commercialization.
Washington- The report, a plan for commercializing carbon capture and sequestration, was ordered by Obama in November. The study asserts that CCS is viable, but acknowledges that the barriers to CCS are overwhelming. The lack of private and government money is currently the biggest barrier, neither of which will likely increase unless climate change legislation passes or a hefty price for carbon dioxide is set.
Washington- The US Dept. of Energy has decided not to fund the new construction of a plant in Mattoon, IL but will instead remake a currently obsolete oil burning plant in Meredosia, IL, now dubbed FutureGen 2. The plant would be fed pure oxygen and burn coal, with the exhaust gas consisting of almost pure carbon dioxide. This new approach could be a way of converting and utilizing old coal plants around the country and according to the energy secretary’s senior advisor, could allow the US coal industry to stay globally competitive.
Illinois- The Dept. of Energy’s deeply politicized FutureGen project announced a change of plans yet again on August 5. Instead of the plant being built in Mattoon and using gasification technologies, an existing plant in Meredosia, IL will be refitted and will use a lesser-developed technology called oxy-combustion, sending the carbon dioxide through a pipeline to be stored in Mattoon, IL. This decision not only will affect the potential outcome of FutureGen, but may also undermine the US’s credibility and reputation in regards to potential investors and partnerships for global energy.
Texas- Teneska has decided to use Fluor’s Econamine FG Plussm carbon capture technology at its proposed Teneska Trailblazer Energy Center that is currently in development near Sweetwater, Texas. Fluor’s amine-based technology for post-combustion capture is one of the first commercial solutions proven to remove CO2 from flue gases and Fluor will be performing initial design and engineering for Trailblazer.
Australia- Last week the underground coal gasification (UCG) pilot project near Kingaroy was shut down after the state government found trace levels of benzene and toluene at the site and neighboring areas. The latest samples of groundwater from the Cougar Energy site show levels of chemicals well within drinking water guidelines. The Department of Environment and Resource Management will continue to regularly monitor and analyze the bores with the state government holding community forums in order for citizens to voice their concerns about UCG projects.
Australia- Cougar Energy, a pilot coal gasification plant outside of Brisbane, Australia, was closed last week upon findings that certain toxins had contaminated the site’s groundwater. Even though the toxins found are well within Australia’s government recommendations for drinking water, the Bligh government has issued inquiries into the entire UCG sector, citing that Cougar’s contamination issues raises concerns about the safety of all UCG projects.
North Dakota- ND’s abundant supply of deeply underground lignite coal has up until recently been considered worthless, but the application of underground coal gasification (UCG) could soon change that. There have been great strides in advancing UCG technologies and North Dakota is likely to become a candidate for a UCG project due to its vast coal reserves and willingness to experiment with alternative energy sources.
Washington, D.C.- The United States DOE recently signed an agreement with NRG Energy Inc. to design and operate a system that will capture and store 400,000 tons of carbon dioxide a year. The project was selected under the Clean Power Initiative and will demonstrate that carbon capture can successfully be applied to existing coal plants. The project is set to start sequestration in 2014 with plans to be completed in 2017.
Mississippi- The SME board is set to vote on buying a 17.5% percent stake in the planned Kemper County IGCC plant on June 30. Last month Southern Co. decided to move forward on starting construction of the 582 MW advanced coal plant after state regulators loosened restrictions on the project.
Alaska- Cook Inlet Region Corp. hopes to create a commercial scale project to create synthesis gas from underground coal combustion with Laurus Energy Inc,. CIRI will be using a coal combustion process proprietarily owned by Laurus which will result in the formation of synthesis gas. The synthesis gas may help to substitute some of natural gas’s applications throughout Southeast Alaska. If agreements are finalized with utility companies the project could be in operation by 2012.
Japan- Mitsubishi plans to approach the Chinese turbine maker Dongfang to join the company in developing IGCC technology in China. The joint venture would drastically reduce Mitsubishi’s production costs; improve production efficiency and lower CO2 emissions.
Wyoming- Though it is hard to determine how well carbon capture technologies will work for existing coal-fired plants, the ability to capture carbon from coal gasification is certain and many leaders from the state of Wyo. are looking towards carbon capture and sequestration as the basis for the future coal market.
Virginia- A planned coal-fired plant in Wise County, VA was in consideration to become a demonstration site for clean coal technologies. The plant was vying to become a part of a economically and environmentally beneficial project with the Virginia Tech Center for Coal and Energy Research, but was not chosen in the last round of competitive selection.
Mississippi- The Mississippi Power Company has decided to proceed with financing and construction of the planned coal-fired plant in Kemper County,MS after hearing that state regulators have relaxed restrictions such as construction cost limits that were initially placed on the project. The Kemper County clean coal plant will convert locally mined lignite to fuel turbines to create electricity and is expected to begin generating power by 2014.
Australia- Australia is piloting several underground coal-gasification projects (UCG), which proponents say could be the development of a highly efficient process and a successful industry aimed for primarily domestic use. Private and international business interest is growing for the development of UCG technologies, but some are worried whether the Australian government will approve of the process when they make a decision by the end of next year.
West Virginia- A discussion draft for a federal program designed to develop and research carbon sequestration and storage technologies was released this week. The program is drafted to give $850M over a 15 year period for cost-shared industry and government research into clean coal technologies and would eventually give a legal and regulatory framework to clean coal technologies.
Indiana- The proposed clean-coal plant near Rockport, Ind. is set to be one of the nation’s first commercially viable synthetic natural gas plants. Opponents are critical of the potential costs versus projected natural gas costs and the perceived pollution associated with the proposed plant. The gasification project will bring much needed jobs to the rural area, and the financial investor Leucadia will fund 20% of the project, with 80% coming from loans backed by the federal government.
Houston (Reuters)- Due to concerns of utility regulators and consumers, Mississippi Power Co. has placed a cap of 3 billion dollars on a proposed IGCC facility in Kemper County, MS, 30% higher then the previous cost estimate of $2.4 billion. The coal-fired plant is being designed to burn lignite and to give utility companies options for electricity sources, as aging coal plants are either being considered for closing or modernizing. Regulators will decide in May about the coal-fired plant.
Wyoming- Wyoming legislators are trying to figure out a way to produce coal that will be clean enough for the ecologically restrictive and lucrative California energy market. Wyo. is looking at China as a possible collaborator in the carbon capture and sequestration market. By sharing desalination practices, Wyo. is getting an inside look at how China is working with carbon sequestering technology.
Washington- The NRG energy project in Thompson, Texas will demonstrate innovative advances in carbon capture and sequestration technologies. The project will show that post-combustion carbon capture can be successfully applied to existing plants economically when the plant can sequester CO2 in nearby oil fields. The 6 year project was selected under the Clean Coal Power Initiative and will receive some of its funds from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.
Indiana- A bill in the Indiana Senate recently passed that would give CO2 pipelines eminent domain rights but has not yet passed in the House. Opponents to the carbon dioxide pipeline fear that carbon dioxide sequestration carries too much uncertainty and may contaminate ground water. Indiana produces 242 million tons of CO2 annually and supporters maintain that CO2 sequestration is not dangerous.
Washington, DC. -Engineers at United Technologies Corp. have received funding from the new ARPA-E program in order to research a way to mimic an enzyme in human beings that effectively traps and releases CO2 in the body, and apply it to a power plant scale. Other ARPA-E funded programs are researching various ways to capture CO2 in an energy efficient fashion. Many of the researched methods are expensive and controversial, but are necessary in order to control and reduce carbon emissions. Approximately 80% of the world’s CO2 emissions come from coal, oil and natural gas, which provide 80% of the world’s power.
Alaska- CIRI is in the process of completing a six-well program to determine the feasibility of developing the nation’s first underground coal-gasification project. A challenge for the project is the disposal of carbon dioxide from the gasification process. CIRI hopes to have the project in operation by 2014.
Kentucky- The Cash Creek plant in Western Kentucky has received the last in major environmental permits needed to operate the coal-to-natural gas plant. Cash Creek plans to pipeline its natural gas for sale on the open market and will also sell its carbon dioxide to companies that will inject it into oil fields for increased oil production. The proposed plant will have a reduction of as much as 98% of its air pollutants and is still awaiting EPA review.
West Virginia- The carbon-capture project was started last year in W.Va. in an effort to show the potential practicability of capturing carbon from a coal-fired plant. The experiment has been successful thus far and the AEP Co. executive hopes to expand the project from its current 20 megawatt portion to store CO2 from 200 megawatts.
Illinois- Developers of the Taylorville energy plant are planning on breaking ground on the clean-coal plant later this year and plan on being able to generate electricity to fuel homes by 2014. The clean-energy plant plans to convert coal to natural gas for energy, and is slated to be the cleanest coal-fired plant of its kind. As part of the Illinois clean-coal law, major Illinois utilities will have to sign a 30 year agreement to purchase energy from the plant. The plant will have many regulatory and legislative issues to overcome and plans to use tax credits and other incentives to reduce the rate increase to consumers.
Alabama- Due to financial and time constraints the Alabama Power Company, a subsidiary of Southern Company based in Atlanta, has decided to back out of a project at the Barry Steam Plant. The project had planned to test out the option of storing large amounts of carbon dioxide underground. The project was set to receive a considerable amount of federal monies to help finance the research of coal-capture technology. The U.S. Energy Department says that they are currently looking for a replacement project.
Wyoming- A recent report from the Wyoming State Geological Survey asserts that a formation east of Rock Springs, WY is able to hold 750 million tons of carbon dioxide. Wyoming plans to further analyze and demonstrate that regions of the formation have the ability to sequester carbon dioxide. Wyoming is one of the country’s top coal producers and will soon have to face either capturing coal or switching to a cleaner fuel source.
Kentucky- The Cash Creek Project in KY plans to gasify Kentucky’s coal into natural gas and sell the natural gas through an interstate pipeline. The Western Kentucky plant says that if utilities are required to purchase their renewable energy they can complete financing on the plant. Several states have similar legislation to require utilities to purchase renewable energy.
Mississippi -A consultant to the Mississippi Public Service Commission recommends approval of the proposed IGCC plant in Kemper County, but encourages a spending cap on the project.
Mississippi- The Mississippi Power Company is meeting with the state Public Service Commission to ascertain whether to build a lignite coal power plant in Kemper County, MS. The IGCC plant will increase power rates 33% over the next ten years, but will reduce the cost over time while meeting with stricter environmental standards.
Kentucky- Kentucky lawmakers are starting the process of giving carbon dioxide pipelines full eminent domain rights. Supporters of the proposal say that it will put KY in the forefront of coal conversion. The proposal was passed through the House committee and is now advancing to the full House for approval.
Texas- The clean-coal power plant is currently in development and hopes to start breaking ground by the end of 2010. It plans to capture 90% of its emissions and will sell off its carbon dioxide for oil recovery in attempt to offset operating costs.
Illinois- Two proposed coal plants which would capture and store carbon dioxide are
waiting for funding decisions. FutureGen expects a federal decision on
funding soon, and Taylorville needs action from the State of Illinois.
Indiana- Legislation to help build CO2 pipelines passes Indiana Senate committee.
New Jersey- Officals in Linden, NJ unanimously approved a $2.5M deal for a coal-fueled PureGen plant.
China-China now has more than 10 coal-gasification plants under construction with total nameplate capacity of about 1.2 trillion cubic feet per year.
London-Britain is to fund four demonstration
carbon capture and storage (CCS) projects
by 2020 in its efforts to reduce carbon emissions,
finance minister Alistair Darling has said.
Finnish utilities Fortum and Teollisuuden Voima (TVO) have entered into co-operation with Maersk Oil and Maersk Tankers, part of the Danish A.P. Moller – Maersk Group, aiming to develop a joint carbon emissions abatement project in the area of Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS).