Bow City Power Ltd.

August 05, 2008 16:50 ET

Bow City Power Project Plans to Move Forward With the Incorporation of Carbon Capture and Storage

CALGARY, ALBERTA--(Marketwire - Aug. 5, 2008) - Alberta is experiencing rapid growth in the demand for new electrical power and the Alberta Electrical System Operator estimates that Alberta's power shortfall will reach 5,000 megawatts by 2017. Put into perspective, current peak demand is just under 10,000 megawatts.

While natural gas will continue to be used as a fuel source for new power generation, the high value of gas for heating, feedstock for petrochemicals and export will continue to make Alberta's thermal coal an important source of fuel for new power generation.

The recent incorporation of well proven environmental control technologies now ensures that coal-fired power plants meet the most stringent environmental standards. However, to be publicly acceptable, coal-fired power plants must also be able to manage their carbon (greenhouse gas) emissions.

The Bow City Power Project (Bow City) is a proposed 1,000 megawatt coal-fired power plant located approximately 185 km east of the City of Calgary. The project is being developed by Bow City Power Ltd. (BCPL) and an application is expected to be submitted late fall, 2008, with an estimated on-line date of 2014.

Bow City has been designed from the outset to have the smallest feasible carbon footprint. Using an advanced super-critical combustion technology, the project generates the lowest level of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions per unit of power of any coal-fired power plant in Canada.

In addition, the project proposes to incorporate an amine scrubbing system capable of removing up to an additional 80 to 90% of the project's CO2 emissions. This will move Bow City's carbon emissions well below the requirements being proposed by government and make it Canada's first true "clean coal" power project. The scrubbed CO2 is proposed to be permanently disposed of into nearby oil fields, which in turn also helps to enhance the recovery of additional oil.

As Dr. Brian Bietz, President of BCPL recently stated, "The inclusion of carbon capture at Bow City is the right thing to do. A new power project in Alberta must incorporate the best available technologies economically achievable from the outset in order to be both socially and personally acceptable."

Additional Background

Coal remains by far Alberta's most abundant and least expensive fuel source for generating electrical power. Unlike natural gas, its value as a source of energy for heating homes or as an export is also much more limited. Much more robust environmental control technologies, well proven in other industries, now ensure that the emission levels of sulphur, nitrogen and particulates (dust) from coal-fired power plants, are also well below the most stringent environmental standards.

More recently, Albertans have also come to expect that companies will address the greenhouse gas (largely carbon dioxide or CO2) emissions from their projects. For Bow City, the carbon capture process is very energy intensive, and so it is important that the carbon capture process not have a negative effect on the project's core purpose, the production of high quality, reliable electrical power.

This has lead BCPL to select advanced super-critical combustion technology. Rare in Canada, super-critical power plants are now being developed throughout the world because of their superior thermal efficiency as well as proven reliability. Using super-critical technology ensures that Bow City can produce high quality power at economic prices while still meeting all current and likely future regulatory requirements for carbon capture.

Although the use of super-critical technology reduces the levels of CO2 emissions by almost 25% below those of conventional coal-fired power plants, Bow City also intends to incorporate proven carbon scrubbing technologies to reduce CO2 even further. Since carbon scrubbing technologies are rapidly improving, steadily higher capture rates and reduced costs are both expected.

Contact Information

  • Bow City Power Ltd.
    Dr. Brian F. Bietz
    (403) 259-6571