The Ohio Environmental Protection Agency has issued the third and final state environmental necessary to the Ohio River Clean Fuels (ORCF) project. Baard Energy will now proceed into final design and construction of the 53,000 barrel per day Coal/Biomass to Liquids plant (CBTL) at the Columbiana County Port Authority site in Wellsville, Ohio. (Earlier post.)
The US Army Corp of Engineers has also issued the only federal permit—the 404 streams and wetlands permit—required for the project.
The Baard project will co-feed the gasifiers with 30% biomass and 70% coal, and capture up to 85% of CO2. ORCF is developing plans to compress the CO2 into liquid form and transport it to the neighboring oil fields in Eastern Ohio for Enhanced Oil Recovery (EOR).
Co-firing with biomass reduces the CO2 output of the process. In 2007, the US Department of Energy’s National Energy Technology Laboratory (DOE/NETL) and the US Air Force released a study concluding that a facility capable of producing 7,500 barrels per day or more of jet fuel or diesel from coal and biomass (CBTL), with accompanying 20% lower life-cycle emissions of CO2 compared to conventional petroleum refining processes, was feasible. (Earlier post.)
According to a year-long study by Idaho National Laboratory also released in 2007, the Baard CBTL fuels will yield 46% less emissions of greenhouse gases than conventional low-sulfur diesel transportation fuels. All emission reductions documented in the study were measured on a wells-to-wheels basis using the Argonne National Lab GREET (Greenhouse Gases, Regulated Emissions, and Energy Use in Transportation) model of transportation fuels (Earlier post.)
The ORCF plant will utilize just more than 20 million gallons per day of water from the Ohio River. More than 80% of the water used is needed for cooling (non-contact cooling water). More than 70% of the water used will be evaporated in cooling towers. About 7,000 gallons per day will be used by the employees (drinking water, showers and restrooms) and will be returned to the Wellsville waste treatment system. The rest of the water (about 30%) will be cleaned to Ohio EPA standards and returned to the Ohio River.
The plant is targeted to produce 50,000 barrels of FT diesel and natpha per day (16 million barrels per year); 3,000 barrels of FT LGP per day (1 million barrels per year); along with 2,000 GWh per year of baseload generation.
Ohio EPA permits