Britain has launched a 12-month emissions capture pilot project, during which they want to capture 300kg of carbon dioxide a day.
Britain’s Drax and Japan’s Mitsubishi are preparing to launch a CO2 capture pilot project in the autumn for the British company’s biomass plants in North Yorkshire.
Drax, one of the UK’s largest coal-fired power producers, has converted four of its six power stations to biomass and plans to close the last two in 2021, keeping them available as reserve until September 2022.
The CO2 capture project aims to support Britain’s climate plans to achieve zero emissions by 2050, in line with the Paris Agreement. However, there has always been, literally, a sea of carbon between the old Member State and its environmental goals, even though the country is rapidly abandoning fossil fuel in favor of wind and gas power. In fact, in 2019 a record for emission-free electricity was set in the UK, reaching 48.5% of the production mix.
The British hope that the capture of CO2 in power stations will be an essential tool for the goal of climate neutrality. In this regard, Drax is preparing to test Mitsubishi solvents, already patented, to verify their efficiency with respect to capturing the emissions produced when biomass pellets are burned. It is estimated that during the 12-month experimental phase, about 300 kg of carbon dioxide per day should be captured. However, it is not yet expected to be stored.
Drax CEO Will Gardiner stated in a press release that the CO2 capture pilot project “will deepen the understanding of the potential to implement BECCS [bioenergy capture use and storage] on a large scale .”
Drax hopes to become carbon negative by 2030 and has another pilot project underway that will use a different solvent to capture emissions and store them so they can be reused in applications such as soft drinks.