Texas Clean Coal Power Plant Finds A Customer

A coal-burning power plant that will capture a record volume of carbon will supply electricity to San Antonio, the Department of Energy announced.
DOE's Office of Fossil Energy provided $350 million to develop Summit Energy's Texas Clean Energy Project, a gasification plant planned for Penwell, an ailing oil town 15 miles west of Odessa. The plant will convert coal to gas, clean the gas before burning, and then capture 90 percent of its carbon emissions.
It is expected to capture 3 million tons of carbon dioxide annually – more than any commercial power plant now operating in the world, according to the DOE.
But the future plant had no customers for its 400 megawatts of electricity until last week, when TCEP officials signed a memorandum of understanding to supply half that amount to community-owned CPS Energy in San Antonio, from 2014 to 2039.
For CPS, the deal is part of an effort to re-describe the company as a leader in the "new energy economy," and San Antonio as a leading city.
CPS also announced last week it would close down a 1970s-era coal-burning plant that faces $550 in renovations to bring its emissions into compliance with expected regulations. That plant generates 871 MW of electricity.
Construction should begin later this year on the Texas Clean Energy Project. Most of the plant's carbon dioxide will be forced underground in oil fields in the nearby West Texas Permian Basin.
That process forces more oil to the surface, extending the life of the oil field, and it locks the carbon dioxide deep inside the earth, preventing it–in theory–from ever entering the atmosphere. The plant will also use carbon dioxide and synthesized gas to produce commercial chemical products including urea, a fertlizer ingredient, and sulfuric acid, argon, and inert slag, a rocky byproduct used in construction.

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