Included in Zpryme's new special report series, Coal: Closer Look at CCS (part 3 of 3), according to the Global CCS Institute, the United States currently has the largest number of large-scale CCS projects and the largest number of fully-operational projects worldwide, 25 out of 74 current and potential projects in 2011.
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Austin, TX - (Zpryme) – 4/30/12 – Included in Zpryme's new special report series, Coal: Closer Look at CCS (part 3 of 3), according to the Global CCS Institute, the United States currently has the largest number of large-scale CCS projects and the largest number of fully-operational projects worldwide, 25 out of 74 current and potential projects in 2011.
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Dr. Raymond L. Orbach, Director at the Energy Institute at the University of Texas at Austin, told Zpryme, “the cost of CCS is the greatest concern in the U.S. It takes about a third of a power plant’s energy to capture CO2, making it uneconomical unless there is an offset.” Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy have encouraged further CCS deployment and development. Research and development has focused on advanced technology programs such as coal to liquid technology, hydrogen turbines, advanced combustion, gasification technology, underground coal gasification, solid oxide fuel cells, and hydrogen from coal technologies. In addition, new regulatory emission standards for coal-fired utility plants, as well as the governmental dedication to furthering the CCS field has solidified the nation’s commitment to further development of the Carbon Capture and Sequestration field.
Unless national or international efforts focus on creating a price on carbon, CCS is unlikely to be adopted in the near term. The Coal Industry itself is opposing the forced adoption of CCS technologies, as the cost of retrofitting the currently operating coal facilities is prohibitive to adoption. In fact, many facilities are citing these costs (specifically the costs of achieving the required higher emissions standards) as the main reason for the plant closures. Although new technologies are being developed to lower the cost of these improvements, they have not reached the point where they are affordable and offer a high return on investment in the short term. These costs are likely to be recouped over years, making them less attractive. However, its use in EOR may become more prevalent as the costs associated with coal increase. More pilot projects are necessary in order to understand the long-term costs and potential health and environmental impacts of CCS.
As more improvements in the processes and technology utilized through all parts of the CCS process advances, from the processing at the coal fired utility plants, to transporting the gas to approved storage sites, the CCS technology will be more cost efficient, more readily adopted, and utilized worldwide.
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