Mar 24, 2009

TARP cheap compared to CO2 Capture and Transport

The TARP and all other renewable energy sources are starting to look cheap.
IGCC is being promoted by the coal industry as having the potential to “capture” CO2. However, capturing CO2 reduces plant efficiency and increases water use.
An Electric Power Research Institute study found CO2 capture equipment:
Decreased plant output by at least 25%;23 and increases water consumption by approximately 23%.
Additional “capture” costs beyond the plant gate, plus transportation and storage costs, are not factored into the efficiency loss or cost increase. The Minnesota Department of Commerce estimated CO2 sequestration costs for Mesaba at roughly $1.107 billion in 2011; and pipeline costs at $635.4 million.
High Costs (one example x200)
Capital costs for IGCC plants are estimated to be 20-47% higher than traditional coal plants. In 2004, Indeck Energy Services testified before the Illinois State EPA that IGCC’s “capital costs are 30% higher.”General construction costs (concrete, steel and labor) have risen 100-300% in recent years, driving up the costs of all power plants. The Department of Energy (DOE) reports that IGCC is seen as too risky for private investors, and requires large subsidies from the federal, state and local governments. In 2006, the EPA estimated that capturing 90% of CO2 emissions from IGCC plants would increase capital costs 47%; and the total cost of electricity 38%. “Capture” does not include transportation of gas or storage.
Compression costs have been estimated at $17/ton CO2, so a 600 MW plant emitting 4-5 million tons/year of CO2 would cost approximately $68-85,000,000/year just for compression.