Promotion of IGCC and coal gasification takes a bizarre twist! What will the DOE think of next!

The DOE has announced their new FutureGen program, which focuses on Carbon Capture and Storage, but wait… read it… they say that the project has to be designed to capture 90% of CO2 emissions, but also say that it must capture and sequester ONE MILLION TONS ANNUALLY. OK, folks, let’s do the math… slowly ‘cuz I’m a math idiot. Using Mesaba as an example, 600MW produces at least 5.4 million tons annually, and so 90% of that is 4.89 tons annually. Under FutureGen, they’d have to capture, transport and store 1 million. OK, now what about the 4.89 tons minus 1 million = 3.89. We’re missing 3.89 tons that they’ve captured. So what is this? Why, it’s a fancy-schmancy CO2 CAPTURE AND RELEASE PROGRAM!!!

Here it is, straight from the horse’s… ummmmmm… nevermind (in tribute to Eight Bells, no horse’s ass awards for a while) Here’s what their press release says:

DOE’s draft FOA also requires that at least 50 percent of the energy output of the project’s energy conversion system must be used to produce electricity; the project must produce at least 300 megawatts (MW) gross electricity output; and the project must be located in the United States. In addition, the projects must be designed to achieve a goal of approximately 90 percent capture of carbon content in the syngas or flue gas and must achieve a minimum capture rate of 81 percent. Under the draft FOA, projects must also remove at least 90 percent of the mercury emissions based on mercury content of the coal, at least 99 percent of the sulfur emissions based on sulfur content of the coal, and reduce nitrogen oxide and particulate emissions to very low levels.

To ensure safe and permanent sequestration, DOE requires a number of monitoring and verification performance requirements for FutureGen project(s), including quantifying and assessing CO2 capture, transport, and storage aspects for the duration of a 3-5 year demonstration of a least one million metric tons of CO2 injected per year in a saline formation; monitoring the plume(s) of injected CO2 for a minimum of two years after cessation of the injection demonstration, with the results of the monitoring reported to DOE; and developing information necessary to estimate costs of future CO2 management systems.

What will they think of next? I sure hope they’re not thinking of a way to give Excelsior even more $$$$$$!

Oh, and before I forget — Greenpeace has joined the radical fringe organizations like the Department of Energy’s NETL and Wall Street in noting that Carbon Dioxide Capture and Sequestration ain’t happen’ anytime soon:

Greenpeace – False Hope

So, take that, FutureGen!

One Response to “DOE announces Capture & Release program”

  1. Harry Says:


    Why does the Green world refuse to accept that the carbon capture and sequestration technology is proven and reliable when tied in with enhanced oil recovery?

    I keep reading as to how CCS is still “unproven” – and yet there is a commercial plant running day-in-day-out in North Dakota and helping to get more oil out of the ground in Canada.

    Seems that the Greens are doing a bit of selective reading, no?


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