Wednesday, February 04, 2015

FutureGen clean-coal project shut down; lacks time to be completed by funding deadline

The Obama Administration has shut down George W. Bush's $1.7 billion FutureGen 2.0 project designed to build a coal-fired power plant in Illinois that captures carbon and pumps it underground, citing lack of time to complete the project before federal funding expires in September, Timothy Cama reports for The Hill.

"Congress authorized $1.1 billion toward the project in 2009 as a continuation of a 2003 project Bush proposed," Cama writes. The U.S. Department of Energy only spent about $200 million of the money authorized for the project.

When Bush proposed FutureGen in 2003 he "envisioned a pioneering plant that would demonstrate sophisticated technology that uses coal cleanly on a commercial scale," Ben Gema reports for National Journal. "Since then, other projects designed to trap power-plant emissions have begun moving ahead, though large-scale carbon capture remains far from widespread commercial deployment in the electricity sector." High costs stalled the project  in 2008, but "the Obama administration later re-imagined and revived FutureGen as a scaled-back project to retrofit an existing plant." (Read more)

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