Drax Power Station – Carbon Capture and Storage 1

Hi there Folks.

I just noticed the news about Drax Power station, which has become the first in Europe to capture carbon dioxide (CO2) from wood-burning, Drax is not very far from my home town and in those days Drax was not there as I grew up, it didn’t exist, once built the plant didn’t start generating power and go online until 1974.
It came about as the demand for electricity continued to increase and because the “Selby Coal Mine” where a new seam of coal was discovered was opened just a few years earlier.

By 1986 it was double in size due to more demand and was the biggest power station in the UK

It made huge efforts in the late 80’s to clean it up after the history of “Acid Rain” and threats from the Scandinavian countries to sue the UK for the damage to it’s forests.
So in 1998 Drax becomes the first power station to invest in retrofitted flue gas desulpherisation (FGD) equipment. Once fully operational in 1995, it removes 90% of sulphur dioxide emissions, making it the cleanest coal-fired power station in the UK.

Up until then the Power station was owned by (and built) by Central Electricity Generating Board which was paid for by the tax payer (you).

In 1990 comes under the ownership of National Power, one of three power generation companies created as part of the privatisation of the electricity industry in England and Wales.
And then, Surprise surprise it is acquired by the US-based AES corporation for £1.87 billion, so much for selling out to the EU ???

I must say though to be fair, since around 2000 – 2002 there has been a lot of investment un modernising and upgrading the site to be more efficient with ne turbines and new furnaces that can burn “Wood Pellets” and “Biomass.

So, as you can see there’s been a lot of changes here, mainly due to electricity demand and the desire and public pressure to move closer towards “Renewable Energy”.

So, Why is Carbon Capture and Storage needed?

This technology is known as Bio Energy with Carbon Capture and Storage (BECCS).

Many scientists believe it will be needed because they don’t trust politicians to curb the CO2 emissions that are over-heating the planet.

They say that unless carbon emissions start falling dramatically, we will overshoot the recommended safety limit of a 1.5C rise in global temperature.

Carbon capture sounds smart – why is it controversial?

There are two main reasons for controversy.

First is the impact on the plants and animals living on the huge amount of land needed to grow the trees and plants needed to generate power on a wide scale.

Second is the amount of additional energy needed to capture and store the carbon.

The Full article is HERE:

What do you think? Comments?

Thanks again.

Sources: BBC News and EnviroLink

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