Carbon Capture Part of W.Va. Natural Gas Power Plant Project
One of the first natural gas power plants to employ carbon capture technology will be located in West Virginia. Maryland-based Competitive Power Ventures recently announced that it has selected Doddridge County in the northcentral part of the state for the $3 billion investment.
The Shay Energy Center will consist of a 1,800 MW, combined-cycle, natural gas power plant that will use carbon capture technology to remove carbon emissions from the electric generation process. It will be one of the first large-scale power plant projects in the U.S. to employ carbon capture, a technology that is in its nascent stages. CPV did not provide details of its carbon capture plan.
Carbon capture and sequestration (CCS) involves removing CO2 from the emissions, pressurizing it, and injecting it into geologic formations far below the surface. West Virginia in 2022 became one of a few states that have approved a framework for regulating carbon capture projects in the state, giving it a boost in attracting such a project.
The project is expected to be completed within the next 10 years and create up to 2,000 construction jobs and 150 full-time jobs. The plant will provide electricity for more than 2 million home in West Virginia and beyond.
Doddridge County and its board of education both approved a payment in lieu of taxes agreement for the project. The county is already home to a large amount of natural gas activity, including the largest gas processing facility in North American, the MPLX Sherwood Gas Processing Complex.
The project will benefit from the 2022 Inflation Reduction Act that expanded the 45Q tax credit for carbon capture to incentivize private investment in carbon capture technology. The legislation increased the credit’s value from $50 to $85 per metric ton of CO2 stored through secure geological storage for industry and power production.
The only power plant currently operating with carbon capture technology is the coal-fired Boundary Dam Power Station in Saskatchewan, Canada. The Petra Nova-W.A. Parish Generating Station near Houston, Texas, operated with CCS from 2017 until May 2020, when the owners stopped operating the CCS equipment, citing unfavorable economics due to low crude oil prices.
A number of power plants and industrial facilities are planning to use carbon capture technology, according to a Clean Air Task Force database.
“By combining the most efficient turbines with carbon capture technology, CPV Shay will provide a critical source of extremely low carbon, dispatchable power that will enable the growth and integration of the company’s renewable energy portfolio without sacrificing the reliability that is the backbone of our society,” the CPV press release states.