EurActiv - Letters to the Editor

Sir,

Regarding “Uncertainty over CO2 capture in ‘fossil future'”:

As the secretary general of the European Power Plant Suppliers Association (EPPSA), which represents the interests of the companies developing CCS technologies, I would like to make the following comments:

CCS-technology suppliers (EPPSA Members) are already now working on the development of the necessary technology. The industry is ready to contribute to the effort, but given the huge amounts necessary to demonstrate this technology, will need a longer time period to make it happen without public support for the demonstartion plants.

And since time is said to be of the essence if we want to avoid irreversible damage due to climate change (following the latest IPCC reports), we call for a clear commitment from the EU member states and the EU institutions to support the industry by creating an adequate fund of several billion euros in order to support either CCS demo projects from 2010 on or to create a larger fund with higher budget supporting ALL low-carbon energy technologies (e.g. CCS, 4th generation nuclear energy, renewable energy sources, etc.)

Patrick Clerens

Secretary General

European Power Plant Suppliers Association ( EPPSA external )

Brussels

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Comments

  1. With over 35 patents pending to reduce co2 emissions radically the crux of the matter is obviously of a political nature.

    To provide the immense amount of disruptive innovation and change within the short span of time available curbing the rise of co2 emissions, non-orthodox forces other than those supplied by governments and corporate structures are obviously needed.

    Doomsday (provided we survive Doomsday – which we probably do) and an ensuing global revolution might supply the disruptive event and revolutionary platform required for the solution to this global issue.

    Steen Hjortsoe,
    Copenhagen

  2. If CCS is technically feasible AND cost-effective, there’s every reason to immediately halt construction of power plants not equipped with CCS, and new plants should only be built with CCS fully integrated.

    If it turns out that CCS would make coal too expensive to compete, than no new coal power plants should be built at all. Another point: CCS development and implementation should be paid by revenues from electricity from coal.

  3. This CCS is pretty ridiculous – there’s no way to capture and store any significant proportion of the 28 gtons (billion tons) of CO2 produced worldwide every year. I think fossil fuel use will decrease because the world is going to run low on 1) first – oil, then 2) – natural gas, then 3) – coal. Maybe even sooner for coal, if China starts using 4,5 gtons year (I think they build a coal fired generation plant every week). A better idea would be to build combined cycle (2-phase) coal power plants, and get 50-65% efficiency from coal instead of the current 30-35%.

    CCS decreases coal power plant generation efficiency, because compressing the CO2, which is needed to effectively transport it to the sequestration site, would need a large amount of energy, at least 30-40% to maybe 80% of the power the plant produces. That means that coal production would have to be more or less increased 40% to keep the same level of production.

    A large scale CCS sequestration project is underway in Canada, but only because the CO2 will be used for enhanced oil recovery in the tar sands.

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