The way we deal with carbon dioxide in our atmosphere has become a critical element of climate action plans the world over. Governments and businesses are under increasing pressure to minimise and counterbalance the amount of carbon dioxide they produce. The energy from waste (EFW) sector will play no small part in handling the carbon dioxide it emits. At Solar 21, we have put futureproof measures in place to not only manage our CO² emissions, but to use that carbon dioxide in the creation of new products.
Carbon Capture, Utilisation and Storage (CCUS) is process by which the EFW sector handles CO² produced. The latest carbon capture technology works by trapping CO² at EFW plants and preventing the release of this gas into the atmosphere. This CO² is then compressed and/or liquified, where it can be used in industrial applications or for permanent storage underground. The addition of CCUS to EFW has the potential to make waste a zero or even negative emissions energy source, depending on the ratio between biogenic and non-biogenic waste fraction.
Having been defined as crucial for meeting climate targets by the International Energy Agency, CCUS technology will help the UK meet its target of bringing all greenhouse gas emissions to ‘net zero’ by 2050.
In November 2020, the UK Government released a ten-point plan for a “green industrial revolution”, which included more than £1.2 billion of new expenditure. According to the IPCC 2021 Climate Report, transformational change is needed to limit global warming to 1.5°C by the end of this century. Undoubtedly investment in CCUS will be one of the key technologies employed in this endeavor.
Solar 21’s upcoming flagship project at North Lincolnshire Green Energy Park (NLGEP) will be one of the first energy recovery facilities in the UK to use CCUS technology. Some of the carbon dioxide will be captured and utilised on site in the manufacture of concrete blocks using fly ash from the energy recovery process. We are exploring the possibility of linking to the Drax carbon pipeline planned for the Humber once that project is consented and built.
For more information on this innovative project, please see www.northlincolnshiregreenenergypark.co.uk
Waste-to-Energy with CCS: A pathway to carbon-negative power generation by David T. Kearns