|Cross-section of the WPC Plasma Gasification Reactor. Click to enlarge.
Alter NRG Corp. is proposing a Coal-to-Liquids (CTL) project that will use the company’s coal reserves in the Fox Creek Area of Alberta, Canada as a feedstock to produce synthetic diesel fuel and naphtha. The project, with a targeted production capacity of 40,000 barrels per day (bbls/d), will require an investment of approximately C$4.5 billion.
Alter NRG will gasify the solid coal feedstock (Westinghouse Plasma Corporation is a subsidiary of Alter NRG) to produce a syngas that will be processed by a Fischer-Tropsch reactor into liquids with a primary emphasis on low sulfur, high-cetane diesel (33,000 bbls/d), but also naphtha (7,000 bbls/d), which is used as a bitumen diluent by the nearby oil sands industry.
The gasification process also has the ability to capture a relatively pure stream of CO2 suitable for sequestration or enhanced oil recovery (EOR) opportunities in the local area. Alter NRG plans to capture more than 85% of the produced CO2 for sale in EOR. In the event that not all CO2 can be disposed of in this way, the project plans to sequester remaining CO2 in deep saline aquifers or in depleted oil or gas pools.
|The gasification and Fischer-Tropsch components of the proposed Alter NRG CTL project. Click to enlarge.
The electrical power produced from the project is expected to meet the power requirements needed to run the coal mine and CTL operations. Surplus power, if any generated, will be marketed in Alberta through the existing electrical grid system.
Alter NRG intends to develop the project in at least two stages, with the first stage potentially producing upwards of 20,000 bbls/d.
Engineering and environmental studies are planned to be carried out for the remainder of 2008 and all of 2009. These studies will form the basis of the Environmental Impact Assessment for the Project. Submission of the project regulatory application is targeted for the end of 2009.
Alter NRG is anticipating an 18-month regulatory review period. Construction will begin soon after receipt of all necessary approvals. Alter NRG plans to start up mining operations by the fall of 2013, to pre-build coal supply for startup of the CTL plant in early 2014. The CTL plant will require a longer engineering design and construction period than the mine.
The Company initiated a strategic partner selection process in early 2008 and expects to provide further details on the development pathway and financing plans at the conclusion of the process in the later part of 2008.
Alter NRG Fox Creek CTL Public Disclosure Document