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Biomass Power and Conventional Fossil Systems with and without CO2 Sequestration - Comparing the Energy Balance, Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Economics

Power generation emits significant amounts of greenhouse gases (GHGs), mainly carbon dioxide (CO2). Sequestering CO2 from the power plant flue gas can significantly reduce the GHGs from the power plant itself, but this is not the total picture. CO2 capture and sequestration consumes additional energy, thus lowering the plant's fuel-to-electricity efficiency. To compensate for this, more fossil fuel must be procured and consumed to make up for lost capacity. Taking this into consideration, the global warming potential (GWP), which is a combination of CO2, methane (CH4), and nitrous oxide (N2O) emissions, and energy balance of the system need to be examined using a life cycle approach. This takes into account the upstream processes which remain constant after CO2 sequestration as well as the steps required for additional power generation.

Author
Spath, Pam
Publication Year
Bioenergy Category
Keywords
Contact Person
Pamela Spath
Contact Organization
NREL