Emissions capture study funded for paper industry
October 14, 2009
Battelle and Boise Inc. will conduct the first-ever feasibility study of new carbon capture and storage technology in the $140 billion pulp, paper and paperboard industry, under a $500,000 project announced by the Department of Energy (DOE), according to a press release. This project will focus on capture technology developed by Fluor Corporation and will take place at Boise''s pulp and paper mill near Wallula, Washington. The seven-month study is being funded by the DOE''s Office of Fossil Energy and managed by the National Energy Technology Laboratory. It is one of 12 projects totaling $21.6 million in American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA) funding that DOE awarded recently for large-scale industrial carbon capture and storage. Successful completion of the study could pave the way for pulp, paper, and other industries to use technology that captures carbon dioxide (CO2). In Phase One, the team will develop a conceptual design for a sequestration system integrated with Fluor''s capture system technology that could support injecting about 720,000 tons a year of CO2 into a deep flood basalt formation. The company has made voluntary commitments to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions. Coupling the capture system with permanent geologic sequestration of the CO2 represents an opportunity for Boise - and the pulp and paper industry in general - to seek a potentially new revenue source from carbon credits that would be generated once a fully functional U.S. market for carbon credits has developed. Fluor will design a customized version of its Econamine FG PlusSM carbon capture technology for operation with the specialized chemical composition of exhaust gases produced from combustion of black liquor fuels. Fluor will determine whether any special modifications are needed to accommodate flue gas produced at the mill, including potential side benefits of reducing emissions of sulfur compounds, which produce odors. The technology has been commercially proven on numerous industrial facilities for more than 20 years. This will be the first use on flue gas for the paper industry. According to DOE, projects will be subject to further competitive evaluation in 2010 after successful completion of their Phase One activities. Projects that best demonstrate the ability to address the agency''s mission needs will be in the final portfolio that will receive additional funding for design, construction, and operation.