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Download Latest Newsletter (Issue 179)
Carbon Capture & Storage Capture Ready CCS Projects
What's Capture Ready
Capture Ready History
Capture Ready Research
Capture Ready History

Following the G8 Gleneagles Plan of Action, the IEA was invited to investigate the definition of Capture Ready that would avoid capture "lock-in" and minimise retrofit costs. The UK Energy Review published in April 2006 also indicated the importance of exploring Capture Ready technologies.

The IEA CO2 Capture Ready Plants Report released in April 2007 revealed that without design for Capture Readiness, every new power plant built would "lock-in" high CO2 emissions for a generation to come. There is an urgent need to define the criteria for ensuring that all new coal-fired plants, especially those burning pulverized coal, will be designed as Capture Ready.

The IEA GHG(Green-house Gas) working parties and the study report contractors have produced the following ‘headline’ summary of capture ready considerations for power plants:
A CO2 Capture Ready power plant is a plant which can include CO2 capture when the necessary regulatory or economic drivers are in place. The aim of building plants that are capture ready is to reduce the risk of stranded assets and ‘carbon lock-in’.

Developers of capture ready plants should take responsibility for ensuring that all known factors in their control that would prevent installation and operation of CO2 capture have been identified and eliminated. This might include:
• A study of options for CO2 capture retrofit and potential pre-investments
• Inclusion of sufficient site space and access for the additional facilities that would be required
• Identification of reasonable routes to credible storage locations for CO2

The competent authorities involved in permitting power plants should be provided with sufficient information to be able to judge whether the plant developer/owner has met these criteria.

The term "Carbon Capture Ready" allegedly means very little specific or definitive to the owners of coal-fired power stations now being considered in Britain, according to a report commissioned by WWF-UK. "Currently, claims of CCS readiness do little more than refer to the need for power plants to leave space on the site for CCS equipment to be retrofitted in the future," says Keith Allott, Head of Climate Change at WWF-UK. Edinburgh University's Scottish Centre for Carbon Storage (SCCS) expressed concern that the "capture ready" label legitimized a ‘build now, capture later’ mindset in the UK, with the eventual retrofit highly uncertain if governments did not add legal requirements to the existing limited impetus from carbon trading and pricing.

In China, Capture Ready is viewed as crucial by energy-related decision makers, although somewhat hampered by the lack of incentives and policy support. Most Chinese key stakeholders believe CCS will be necessary to mitigate greenhouse gas emissions, although some of them perceive CCS technologies as fairly risky and only partially mature. China is developing a number of its own CCS research and potentially commercial projects as well as being actively involved in international collaborations.

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