Basin Electric Power Cooperative and Hydrogen Energy International LLC will receive up to $408 million in federal funding to develop "clean coal" power plants that capture and sequester their emissions of carbon dioxide, the main heat-trapping gas that contributes to global warming.
"These new technologies will not only help fight climate change, they will also create new jobs and position the United States as a leader in carbon capture-and-storage technologies for many years," said Energy Secretary Steven Chu, who announced the Clean Coal Power Initiative funding today.
The money comes from the $787 billion American Recovery and Reinvestment Act that President Obama signed into law in February.
Basin Electric Power Cooperative will receive up to $100 million to retrofit its Antelope Valley power plant near Beulah, N.D., about 75 miles northwest of the company's headquarters in Bismarck. The cooperative will partner with Powerspan Corp. and Burns & McDonnell to demonstrate the removal of CO2 from the flue gas of a lignite-based boiler.
Powerspan's ammonia-based technology is expected to remove about 90 percent of the CO2 from the flue gas and yield about 1 million tons of pipeline-quality CO2 annually, according to DOE. The ammonia-based sulfur dioxide scrubbing system is expected to produce a liquid stream of ammonium sulfate that will be processed into a fertilizer byproduct.
Hydrogen Energy, a joint venture owned by oil major BP PLC and mining giant Rio Tinto PLC, will receive up to $308 million from DOE to build an integrated gasification combined cycle (IGCC) power plant in Kern County, Calif.
The Central California facility will use nonpotable water to convert blends of coal and petroleum coke into hydrogen and CO2. The hydrogen will be used to generate electricity, and the CO2 will be used to enhance recovery in nearby oil fields.
Hydrogen Energy will begin building the 380-megawatt power plant in 2011 and complete it in 2015, according to the company's Web site. The facility is expected to capture more than 2 million tons of CO2 annually.
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