The International Energy Agency (IEA) recently released its annual energy technology report, Energy Technology Perspectives 2015 (ETP15). The report reviews the latest developments in energy technology and provides detailed examples of the technologies in action and identifies regulatory strategies and cooperative frameworks to advance innovation in areas like variable renewables, carbon capture and storage (CCS), and energy-intensive industrial sectors.
ETP15 Highlights on Coal
- ETP15 highlights that coal accounts for 30% of global primary energy consumption and more than 40% of electricity generation.
- The report recommends three principles for future coal-fired power stations:
- Facilities should offer the highest possible efficiency.
- Plants must be able to operate with sufficient flexibility to balance electricity supply and demand by compensating for variable supply from increasing renewable power.
- If not initially installed with carbon capture and storage (CCS), stations should be designed for future retrofit of CO2 capture.
ETP15 Highlights on Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS)
- Over the past five years there has been a steady increase in the number of CCS projects under construction. ETP15 identifies the opening of Boundary Dam in October, 2014 as a significant milestone for CCS, as construction continues on the Kemper County energy facility in Mississippi, which is expected to come on-line in 2016.
- The IEA recommends that governments and industry work together to ensure projects currently in development receive final investment decisions as soon as possible, promoting a constant stream of development.