Coal is the largest source of electricity supply in the world with 41% of the global power coming from the burning of coal.The Pros of Coal have made the growth of Thermal Power Plants accelerate in developing countries like China and India.This has made Coal Stocks run up by more than 150% in 2010 and another 30% in 2010.However Coal is also the greatest contributor to Greenhouse Gas Emissions.Coal is also responsible for thousands of deaths directly and indirectly due to Coal Mining and Coal Combustion which leads to waste products like Mercury,Arsenic etc which are extremely toxic to human health.To solve the twin problems of cheap energy and global warming, a number of technologies have been been proposed which would reduce the harmful effects of Coal Combustion.

Despite a number of Clean Coal Technologies being developed and employed,carbon emissions from Coal Ming and Use can only be partly reduced and will not make a major impact on the problem of Climate Change.Clean Coal Technology is not a Green Solution to the Disadvantages of Coal.Saying that implementing Clean Coal Technology will result in Climate Change Mitigation is Greenwashing.That said these technologies need to be implemented till the world is ready to move away from its addiction to cheap energy provided by Coal even though it has a deleterious long term affect.

Carbon Capture and Sequestration (CCS) has been mooted as one of the main weapons against climate change.With little alternative to Coal based power generation,CCS is touted as a temporary solution.However CCS as a global warming solution is like putting lipstick on a pig.The technology for CCS remains immature at best and even the biggest users of coal,the Chinese utilities have ruled out using CCS before 2015.Though big pilot projects have been announced in Australia,USA and UK,CCS is not a serious option as far as dealing with climate change.This however has not prevented companies from playing in this area.Toshiba is the latest company to join the CCS fray hoping to set up a 5 MW pilot plant in JV with India’s biggest power utility NTPC.

Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) Technology is akin to putting Lipstick on a Pig (read Coal Power Plants).This Technology which has been hyped as the Green Answer to Coal’s Dirty Polluting Ways has never been proven on a commercial scale .Note the British Government promising CCS with every new Coal Plant.Despite numerous large pilot projects,the Technology remains immature.Even China which gets 80% of its electricity from Coal Power Plants and is the biggest emitter of GHGs,remains skeptical of this technology.

Jindal Steel and Power Limited (JSPL),one of India’s biggest private sector Steel companies is looking to build a Rs 42000 crore ( ~$10 billion) Coal to Liquid (CTL) project in India’ eastern state of Orissa.Note JSPL is headed by Naveen Jindal who is also a leader of India’s ruling Congress party.This CTL plant will be […]

Introduction to Coal To Liquid (CTL) and Sasol The Tata- Sasol Joint Venture has been working to set up a massive $10 billion coal to liquid (CTL) plant in India‚Äôs Orissa state with a capacity of 80,000 barrels of oil per day. South African petrochemicals giant Sasol is the world leader in coal to liquid […]