Minn. utility joins national 'carbon capture' testingby Stephanie Hemphill, Minnesota Public Radio
St. Paul, Minn. — Great River Energy will study the feasibility of adding carbon capture to its Coal Creek Station in Underwood North Dakota.
Half the nation's electricity comes from coal, and the industry wants to find ways to capture the carbon dioxide that contributes to global warming.
Great River Energy and four other utilities are conducting design exercises to see how it would work to install filters on existing coal plants.
Charlie Bullinger is senior principal engineer at Great River Energy. He said as the control systems exist today, they use up nearly a third of the energy produced by the power plant.
"So if we put that on from Maine to California we'd have to add 30-percent more generation just in order to get us even to where we are today."
Bullinger says scientists around the country are working to improve the technology. He says it took 20 years for acid rain pollution controls to improve from 60-percent to 90-percent efficiency.