UK to Build World’s First Negative Emission Power Plant
Ashley Allen / 5 years ago
Drax in North Yorkshire is a giant coal power station. Its 12 cooling towers makes it one of the largest of its kind, and one of the world’s largest emitters of greenhouse gasses, pumping 23 million tonnes of carbon dioxide into the Earth’s atmosphere while it produces up to one-tenth of the UK’s electrical power. Change is afoot, though, as its owners are planning on scrapping fossil fuels in favour of wood pellets, while also initiating a program to plant CO2-loving trees in the Southern US to replace each one burned, with the eventual aim of absorbing all those harmful emissions. If successful, Drax could become the world’s first negative emission power plant.
“This is a very exciting new technology,” says Dr. Jeremy Tomkinson, CEO of the National Non-Food Crops Centre, said. “It means we can actually reduce the volume of CO2 in the atmosphere.” Tomkinson’s company is helping Drax’s transition into an environmentally friendly operation.
“Since the beginning of July, half of Drax’s electricity has been generated by burning biomass, mostly from pine forests in the American Deep South,” Richard Peberdy, vice-president for sustainability with the Drax Group, said during a tour of those forests in Mississippi. The Drax Group is converting six of its power stations to biomass.
Drax hopes to complete the conversion of its Yorkshire plant by 2020.
Thank you New Scientist for providing us with this information.