Toshiba Starts Operation of Large-Scale Carbon Capture Facility-Towards the world’s first negative emission biomass power plant-
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Toshiba Energy Systems & Solutions Corporation
OMUTA, JAPAN―Toshiba Energy Systems & Solutions Corporation (hereinafter “Toshiba ESS”) announced today that it has started the operation of a large-scale carbon capture facility at Mikawa Power Plant (capacity: 50,000 kW) operated by Toshiba ESS's subsidiary, SIGMA POWER Ariake Corporation, in Omuta, Fukuoka prefecture. This project is carried out by 18 entities*1, including Toshiba ESS, as part of the “Demonstration of Sustainable CCS*2 Technology Project”, sponsored by Japan’s Ministry of the Environment (MOE). The Mikawa Power Plant is fueled with palm kernel shells (PKS) as the primary fuel source for biomass energy generation. Therefore, the new facility to commence operation will be the world’s first*3 Bio energy power plant to be applied with a large-scale Carbon Capture and Storage (BECCS*4) capability.
Toshiba ESS already operates a pilot carbon capture facility that can capture 10 tons of CO2 a day from September 2009 at the same Mikawa Power Plant. This has been used to verify and demonstrate practical operation of the system, including its performance, operability and maintainability.
The new facility for this project began its construction in February 2018 at the area neighboring the power plant. This facility will capture more than 500 tons of CO2 a day, over 50% of Mikawa’s daily emissions. It will also be the Japan’s first*5 carbon capture unit to capture over 50% of total CO2 emission from a thermal power plant.
To achieve the realization of a low carbon society, introduction of renewable energy sources has been progressing all over the world. However, thermal power generation still remain as a major part of the dependable electrical energy supply. Accordingly, the realization of CCUS*6 technology which can significantly reduce CO2 from these power plants is vital for its sustainability.
Under these circumstances, Toshiba ESS has been promoting the introduction of CO2 capture technology in addition to providing highly-efficient and environmental friendly generating equipment and services.
Toshiba ESS will use the facility to evaluate the CO2 capture technology’s performance, cost, environmental effects and operational integration with power plant.
As Mikawa Power Plant is a biomass-fired power plant, it is deemed Carbon-neutral*7. By applying the CCS technology to this biomass power plant to capture its CO2, it becomes a "negative emission" BECCS power plant, that removes CO2 discharged in the past and which has accumulated in the atmosphere.
Takao Konishi, Director and Senior Vice President of Power Systems Division at Toshiba ESS commented, “We are honored to start the operation of this large-scale carbon capture facility. Through this project, we will further contribute to global promotion of cleaner energy production through development and deployment of CO2 capture technology, including its application to biomass power plants.”
*1: 18 entities: Toshiba Energy Systems & Solutions Corporation, (Toshiba Corporation at the time of contract), Mizuho Information & Research Institute, Inc., Chiyoda Corporation, JGC JAPAN CORPORATION, Mitsubishi Materials Corporation, TAISEI CORPORATION, DIA Consultants Co., Ltd., QJ Science Ltd., JAPAN NUS Co., Ltd., National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST), Central Research Institute of Electric Power Industry (CRIEPI), The University of Tokyo, KYUSHU UNIVERSITY, Uyeno Transtech Ltd., Mitsubishi Corporation Exploration Co., Ltd., INPEX CORPORATION (INPEX), Japan Coal Energy Center (JCOAL), TAIHEIYO CEMENT CORPORATION
*2: CCS : Carbon Capture and Storage
*3&5: As of October 2020, according to Toshiba ESS survey
*4: BECCS : Bio-energy with Carbon Capture Storage
*6: CCUS : Carbon Capture, Utilization and Storage
*7: Carbon-neutral refers to achieving net zero carbon dioxide emissions by balancing carbon dioxide emissions with carbon removal. Since CO2 in the atmosphere is removed by photosynthesis in the growth process of biomass fuel, the CO2 emitted to the atmosphere upon its combustion is considered to be in balance with this removal.