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Carbon capture for coal costly, study finds
By Ken Ward Jr., Charleston Gazette

CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- Harvard University researchers have issued a new report that confirms what many experts already feared: Stopping greenhouse gas emissions from coal-fired power plants is going to cost a lot of money.

Electricity costs could double at a first-generation plant that captures and stores carbon dioxide emissions, according to the report from energy researchers at the Harvard Kennedy School's Belfer Center.

Costs would drop as the technology matures, but could still amount to an increase of 22 to 55 percent, according to the report, "Realistic Costs of Carbon Capture," issued this week.

These projections "are higher than many published estimates," but reflect capital project inflation and "greater knowledge of project costs," wrote researchers Mohammed Al-Juaied and Adam Whitmore.

Coal is the nation's largest source of global warming pollution, representing about a third of U.S. greenhouse emissions, equal to the combined output of all cars, trucks, buses, trains and boats.

Or... we could stop using coal, since Coal Is Carbon Captured™. Why take it out the ground, capture the carbon, and then stick it back in the ground. Wouldn't it be simpler, cleaner, and less destructive to simply just not take coal out of the ground in the first place?

by Magnifico on Wed Jul 22nd, 2009 at 05:28:43 PM EST
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