SciTech Connect

Title: Realistic costs of carbon capture

Realistic costs of carbon capture There is a growing interest in carbon capture and storage (CCS) as a means of reducing carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions. However there are substantial uncertainties about the costs of CCS. Costs for pre-combustion capture with compression (i.e. excluding costs of transport and storage and any revenue from EOR associated with storage) are examined in this discussion paper for First-of-a-Kind (FOAK) plant and for more mature technologies, or Nth-of-a-Kind plant (NOAK). For FOAK plant using solid fuels the levelised cost of electricity on a 2008 basis is approximately 10 cents/kWh higher with capture than for conventional plants (with a range of 8-12 cents/kWh). Costs of abatement are found typically to be approximately US$150/tCO2 avoided (with a range of US$120-180/tCO2 avoided). For NOAK plants the additional cost of electricity with capture is approximately 2-5 cents/kWh, with costs of the range of US$35-70/tCO2 avoided. Costs of abatement with carbon capture for other fuels and technologies are also estimated for NOAK plants. The costs of abatement are calculated with reference to conventional SCPC plant for both emissions and costs of electricity. Estimates for both FOAK and NOAK are mainly based on cost data from 2008, which was at the end of a period of more » sustained escalation in the costs of power generation plant and other large capital projects. There are now indications of costs falling from these levels. This may reduce the costs of abatement and costs presented here may be 'peak of the market' estimates. If general cost levels return, for example, to those prevailing in 2005 to 2006 (by which time significant cost escalation had already occurred from previous levels), then costs of capture and compression for FOAK plants are expected to be US$110/tCO2 avoided (with a range of US$90-135/tCO2 avoided). For NOAK plants costs are expected to be US$25-50/tCO2. Based on these considerations a likely representative range of costs of abatement from CCS excluding transport and storage costs appears to be US$100-150/tCO2 for first-of-a-kind plants and perhaps US$30-50/tCO2 for nth-of-a-kind plants.The estimates for FOAK and NOAK costs appear to be broadly consistent in the light of estimates of the potential for cost reductions with increased experience. Cost reductions are expected from increasing scale, learning on individual components, and technological innovation including improved plant integration. Innovation and integration can both lower costs and increase net output with a given cost base. These factors are expected to reduce abatement costs by approximately 65% by 2030. The range of estimated costs for NOAK plants is within the range of plausible future carbon prices, implying that mature technology would be competitive with conventional fossil fuel plants at prevailing carbon prices. « less
Authors: ;
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:960194
Report Number(s):ETP-DiscussionPaper-2009-08
TRN: US200923%%462
Resource Type:Technical Report
Data Type:
Research Org:Energy Technology Innovation Policy Research Group, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA (United States)
Sponsoring Org:Science, Technology and Public Policy Program (US); Environment and Natural Resources Program Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs (US)
Country of Publication:United States
Language:English
Subject: 01 COAL, LIGNITE, AND PEAT; 20 FOSSIL-FUELED POWER PLANTS; 29 ENERGY PLANNING, POLICY, AND ECONOMY; CAPITAL; CARBON; CARBON DIOXIDE; COMPRESSION; ELECTRICITY; FOSSIL FUELS; LEARNING; MARKET; POWER GENERATION; PRICES; SOLID FUELS; STORAGE; TRANSPORT CARBON DIOXIDE; CAPTURE; ABATEMENT; UNDERGROUND STORAGE; COST; CARBON SEQUESTRATION; ECONOMIC IMPACT