Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Smart Coal: Coal to Liquids

Coal can be converted to liquids profitably as long as the oil price remains over 80$ a barrel. Brian Westenhaus has an article today on coal-to-liquids (CTL) that looks at some of the details.
The developed world can solve its oil and gas problems with F-T. All the facts and sources are enough to make an oil exporter very nervous, indeed....

...even today with oil coming back to near $100 a barrel the F-T processes can be highly competitive. It’s the carbon and hydrogen available in the feedstocks that make pricing work or not. Coal at $50 a ton, as shown by Sasol can yield 1.25 barrels of oil equivalent, can be worth twice the feedstock price. South Africa found that Sasol profits got so high that excess profit taxes were levied.

In the U.S. several companies have started coal to liquid process experiments that range from pilot plants to commercial installations. The big oil firms like Shell, Exxon and StatoilHydro are already running in South Africa, Malaysia and New Zealand closing in on 60,000 barrels a day of production.

The little guys like American Clean Coal Fuels who is developing a 30,000-barrel per day combined biomass and coal plant in Oakland Illinois uses carbon capture and sequestration to keep the unused CO2 from the atmosphere.

Baard Energy is building a 53,000-barrel per day combined biomass and coal plant in Wellsville Ohio with a market for the excess CO2 headed to oil field enhanced recovery. _NewEnergyandFuel
The CO2 produced can be piped to an algae oil operation conveniently located next to the CTL plant. Biomass can be easily integrated into the gasification and F-T process as well, providing a multi-feedstock, multi-product operation.

Previously published at Al Fin

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