Power generation emits significant amounts of greenhouse gases (GHGs), mainly carbon dioxide (CO2). Sequestering CO2 from the power plant flue gas can significantly reduce the GHGs from the power plant itself, but this is not the total picture. CO2 capture and sequestration consumes additional energy, thus lowering the plant's fuel-to-electricity efficiency. To compensate for this, more fossil fuel must be procured and consumed to make up for lost capacity. Taking this into consideration, the global warming potential (GWP), which is a combination of CO2, methane (CH4), and nitrous oxide (N2O) emissions, and energy balance of the system need to be examined using a life cycle approach. This takes into account the upstream processes which remain constant after CO2 sequestration as well as the steps required for additional power generation.

Contact Information
Contact Person: 
Pamela Spath
Contact Organization: 
NREL
Publication Information
Author: 
Spath, Pam
Publication Year: 
2003
DOE Information
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