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BP to make electricity from coke


Charles Randall

BP and Edison Mission Group Plan Major Hydrogen Power Project for California

CARSON, Calif., Feb. 10 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ — BP and Edison Mission Group (EMG), a subsidiary of Edison International, today announced that they are planning a new $1 billion hydrogen-fueled power plant in California that would generate clean electricity with minimal carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions.
The first-of-its-kind plant would be located alongside BP’s Carson refinery, about 20 miles south of Los Angeles, and would be capable of producing 500 megawatts (MW) of low-carbon generation, enough power to serve 325,000 Southern California homes.
BP and EMG hope to complete detailed engineering and commercial studies in 2006, finalize project investment decisions in 2008 and bring the new power plant online by 2011.
Potential project benefits include:
* Providing 500MW of new clean generating capacity for Southern California at a time when state agencies are predicting possible power supply shortages during the coming years.
* Eliminating four million tons of CO2 per year from the atmosphere by sequestering it underground.
* Enabling additional production from existing California oil fields, producing previously unrecoverable oil reserves by injecting the CO2 into oil reservoirs, where the CO2 would be permanently stored.
* Boosting the Southern California economy with 1,000 construction jobs and 150 permanent operational positions.
* Increasing the diversity and supply of US indigenous fuels available to generate electricity.
* Preserving limited fresh water sources by using recycled and treated city waste water for plant needs.
The proposed Carson project would combine a number of existing industrial processes to provide a new option for generating electricity without significant CO2 emissions. Petroleum coke produced at California refineries would first be converted to hydrogen and CO2 gases and around 90 percent of the CO2 captured and separated.
The hydrogen gas stream would be used to fuel a gas turbine to generate electricity. The captured CO2 would be transported by pipeline to an oilfield and injected into reservoir rock formations thousands of feet underground, both stimulating additional oil production and permanently trapping the CO2.
California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, speaking at today’s project announcement in Carson, attended by BP, EMG and state and city officials, said: “I want to thank you for choosing California. This will be the first plant of its kind in the whole country and I think it is a perfect fit for our state. With our Strategic Growth Plan, a commitment to Air Quality, and innovative projects like this Hydrogen Plant, I know we can have clear skies, improve our quality of life and build a stronger, more vibrant economy for California.”
Ross Pillari, president of BP America, said: “Wide-scale deployment of technology such as hydrogen power can make a significant contribution towards the reduction in greenhouse gas emissions needed worldwide. California is a natural location for this project. Both the state and federal government have challenged businesses to take a leadership role in tackling carbon dioxide emissions. With this project, we expect to make a meaningful contribution to those goals.”
“The Carson project has the potential to provide new, environmentally sound electricity generation at a time when California’s growing economy needs additional power supplies,” said John Bryson, chairman of EMG parent company Edison International.
Final project investment decisions will follow further study by the partners and review by the California Energy Commission and the South Coast Air Quality Management District. BP and EMG are beginning project discussions with state and federal government agencies and local stakeholders and are exploring options for selling the electricity the plant would generate. BP is in discussions with Occidental Petroleum to develop options for sequestering the CO2 in Occidental’s California oilfields.
The costs of hydrogen power are higher than those of traditional power plant fuels. As a result, the project will depend, in part, on incentives provided in the Federal Energy Policy Act of 2005 for advanced gasification technologies. In addition, continued progress on the California Public Utilities Commission’s electricity “resource adequacy” procurement policies will encourage this first-of-its-kind facility.
For more information on the project, please visit:
First Call Analyst: FCMN Contact:
CONTACT: Cindy Wymore, +1-714-228-6719, for BP;
Doug McFarlan,+1-312-343-2561, +1-312-583-6024, for EMG

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