Project: Plant Barry
Company/Alliance: Southern Energy, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI), Southern Company, SECARB (US DOE's Southeast Regional Carbon Sequestration Partnership) and Electric Power Research Institute
Location: Plant Barry Power station, Mobile, Alabama, US
Size: Stage 1: 25 MW slip stream of the 2567MW plant (0.15 Mt/yr CO2 )
Stage 2: 160 MW: 1Mt/yr (TBD if phase 2 will go ahead)
Capture Technology: Post-combustion with chilled ammonia (MHI technology)
CO2 Fate: Sequestration into the Citronelle oil field
Timing: Ground breaking (2010) Capture (June 2011) Storage (2012)
MHI will test its proprietary KS-1 solvent for CO2 absorption and desorption, which MHI and the Kansai Electric Power CO. Inc. jointly developed. The process claims that it requires considerably lower energy consumption than other technologies. Southern has not provided a cost estimate for this project. DOE awarded $295M in December 2009 for an 11 year CCS contract as part of the CCPI funding - see below.
Southern Company received $15 million from the US DOE in August 2011 to cover part of the cost of installing a heat exchanger at Plant Barry in Alabama. This was part of $67 million which was awarded to 4 projects to research into reducing CO2 emissions.
Plant Barry successfully started capturing CO2 in June 2011 and sequestering the CO2 underground in August 2012. Southern Company started a test of capturing CO2 from one its subsidiary power plants: Plant Yates near Newnan, Georgia in September 2010. The pilot-scale project at Plant Yates, which uses a capture system developed by Mitsubishi Heavy Industries provided additional process improvements before the technology was demonstrated at the larger 25 MW scale at Plant Barry in 2011.
Southern Company's Plant Barry was part of the original group of projects to receive third round CPPI funding in December of 2009. One million tons of carbon was to be captured per year and stored underground in the saline formations of the Citronelle oil field. In both the literature as well as in speaking with individuals involved with the project, it seems that a short time line was to blame for Southern's pull out of the DOE Phase 3 funding. With the DOE money came a hard deadline of commitment to the project. Representatives from Southern Energy have indicated that due to the nature of the money, coming from the economic stimulus, they did not have enough time to perform due diligence in terms of financial ramifications for the company. Early estimates for the total cost of Plant Barry indicated that Southern would have to contribute $350 million on top of the government's grant. Finally, negotiations with subcontractors were not complete, something that Southern indicated they as a company would not be comfortable moving forward without. Southern is continuing with its smaller 25 MW pilot but the larger 160 MW remains uncertain.
Project Link: Mitsubishi Heavy Industries announces carbon capture technology to be demonstrated in United States (May 2009)
Other Sources and Press Releases:
CCS Project at Plant Barry Begins Storing CO2 Underground (August 2012)
Southern gets $15M for carbon capture project (August 2011)
Mitsubishi begins CO2 capture at Plant Barry (June 2011)
Southern's Plant Barry is successfully capturing CO2 (June 2011)
Southern successful captures CO2 at power plant test site (September 2010)
Ground breaking of CCS project (April 2010)
Construction starts on steam plant (April 2010)
Southern pulls out of DOE project (February 2010)
DOE awards $295M (December 2009)
DOE announces news of SECARB's involvement in CCS project (July 2009)
Southern to test MHI carbon capture technology (May 2009)
Date Modified May 13, 2013