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Monday, March 18, 2013

Carbon arithmetic

Arithmetic of a recipe the coal, shale gas and coal seam gas industries don't want you to know

  1. Combine coal and/or biomass containing 180 kilograms of carbon with 270 kilograms of water to produce 120 kilograms of methane and 330 kilograms of carbon dioxide. 
  2. Separate and store the 330 kilograms of carbon dioxide. 
  3. Compress or liquefy the 120 kilograms of methane to use as fuel in a compressed natural gas (CNG) vehicle or in a liquefied natural gas (LNG) vehicle, truck, train or ship. 
  4. Alternately use the 120 kilograms of methane as fuel in a gas power station to produce 1 megawatt-hour of electricity with emissions of just 330 kilograms of carbon dioxide. A carbon price of $23 per tonne of carbon dioxide emissions would add nearly 1 cent to the cost of each kilowatt-hour of electricity generated. 
Coincidentally, the 1 cent per kilowatt-hour for a carbon price is about the same amount saved because this recipe uses less coal to produce electricity than a coal power station.


Industrial-scale carbon capture and storage (CCS) in action

In Salah, an industrial-scale CCS project in Algeria has been in operation since 2004. More than three million tonnes of CO₂, separated during gas production, have been securely stored in a deep saline formation. BP, Sonatrach and Statoil, the project operators, aim to store a total of 17 million tonnes over the next 20 years. (Read more...)

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