This week saw some very significant policy progress for BECCS in the U.S. with the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (overseen by the U.S. Department of Energy) publishing a new study that highlighted the supply side options required to deliver President Biden’s goal of 100% clean electricity by 2035.
With regards, BECCS, the study said:
- By 2035, the U.S. will need 100Mt of negative emissions from BECCS to offset remaining positive carbon emissions in the power sector.
- The DoE confirms its view that BECCS is woody biomass with post-combustion CCS – the model that Drax has led the world in developing.
- It states: “BECCS results in a net negative emissions rate because carbon from the atmosphere is captured during photosynthesis and then sequestered after combustion.”
- To get to 100% clean electricity by 2035, deployment of BECCS must start by 2026 and the installed capacity range must be between 7 and 14GW.
- They believe that 7-14GW of BECCS can offset 250-375GW of fossil fuel because it acts as a capacity multiplier.
- They believe there is 105 million dry tonnes of sustainable woody biomass fibre available per year to be mobilised
- In the ‘constrained’ scenario, BECCS deploys ahead of DAC, highlighting it is viewed as the most efficient and effective form of CCS.
Responding to the findings, Will Gardiner, Drax Group CEO, said:
“The evidence couldn’t be any clearer – only through deploying BECCS at scale can the United States cut its carbon emissions while simultaneously benefitting from reliable, homegrown renewable power to strengthen its energy independence.
“BECCS is vital because it can produce reliable renewable power whilst also permanently removing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere – no other technology does both.
“Drax is the world’s leader in developing power BECCS, having been the first company in the world to capture carbon dioxide from purely biomass combustion. We have been making very encouraging progress towards in delivering BECCS in North America and progressing with site selection, government engagement and technology development
“With the right support from governments, such as the increase in the level of support for carbon removal projects in the Inflation Reduction Act, we stand ready to invest billions in deploying BECCS at scale across the globe to cut carbon emissions and generate renewable power for millions of homes and businesses.”
- Drax is the world leader in developing power BECCS, having been the first to capture carbon dioxide from a 100% biomass feedstock post-combustion.
- The company is currently progressing plans to build the world’s largest power in carbon capture and storage project at its UK plant in North Yorkshire.
- Once scaled-up, the BECCS project in the UK could capture and store eight million tonnes of CO2 each year.
- Across the globe, the company plans to deliver at least four million tonnes of negative emissions outside of the UK by the end of this decade.
- Drax has 18 operational pellet plants and developments with nameplate production capacity of around 5 million tonnes a year across the U.S. and Canada.