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UK's first carbon capture plant opens

Energy secretary Chris Huhne has opened the UK’s largest carbon capture pilot plant at energy firm SSE’s Ferrybridge coal-fired power station in West Yorkshire.

The £20M project - a collaboration between SSE, engineering firm Doosan Power Systems and Swedish power firm Vettenfall - will capture up to 100t of carbon dioxide per day from the power station’s combustion gas flues.

This is the amount of carbon dioxide produced by 5MW of electrical power; but is only a small fraction of the total exhaust from the 2000MW plant. Engineers have designed the unit, known as CCPilot100+, which will separate the carbon dioxide from the other combustion gases through a scrubbing process. However, the carbon dioxide will still be released into the atmosphere as the pilot is only looking at the capturing element of a carbon capture and storage scheme.

Engineers have designed the capture unit as the first step to a full commercial-scale demonstration project envisaged by the government. The project was supported by a £6M grant from the Department of Energy and Climate Change and the Technology Strategy Board.

Readers' comments (1)

  • Wonderful, £20m for Carbon Capture and Release to atmosphere, I hope that Mr Hiuhne is aware that to capture the CO2 from Drax, just up the road would require a plant some 500 to 700 times larger and I almost forgot, find somewhere to store, forever, the 18,000,000 tonnes of CO2 per year! Even more forgetfullness,after 4 years of negotiation the full scale trial at Longannet has been abandoned and a new competition is being organised, but without any money, the allocated £1 billion has now been wirthdrawn. What a way to run a so called low carbon energy policy,

    Derek Limbert (F)

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