On July 21, construction began on a $19.5 million carbon-capture pilot, funded partly by DOE, at Kentucky Utilities' E.W. Brown Generating Station. The two-megawatt thermal system will be the first megawatt-scale carbon-capture pilot unit in the Commonwealth.
Officials of the Commonwealth of Kentucky and energy leaders — including Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear, State Energy Secretary Len Peters, DOE representatives, and other dignitaries and project partners — marked the start of construction with a formal ribbon-cutting and press conference at the power plant. When completed later this year, the unit will test a system conceived by the University of Kentucky Center for Applied Energy Research (UKCAER) at slipstream-scale to capture carbon dioxide (CO2) from the flue gas of an operating coal-fired power plant.
"This project reinforces coal as part of the President's "All of the Above" strategy, and underscores the viability of coal as part of America's low-carbon economy," said Julio Friedmann, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Clean Coal and Carbon Management at the Department of Energy.
The UKCAER project, managed by the Office of Fossil Energy’s National Energy Technology Laboratory, was competitively selected for funding by the Energy Department in 2011. The project is part of DOE’s Carbon Capture Program, which is developing technologies for both pre- and post-combustion carbon capture. The program supports national efforts to mitigate climate change by capturing CO2 at large point sources, such as power plants, and permanently storing the greenhouse gases to prevent its release into the atmosphere.