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Energy and the Environment, 1999

1-56700-127-0 (Print)


J. T. McMullan
Energy Research Centre, University of Ulster, Coleraine, Co. Londonderry, BT52 1SA, U.K.


This paper presents the results of an extensive range of strategic studies on clean power generation from fossil fuels. It discusses the available options for clean coal and oil based power generation, particularly in the context of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, which emerged from the Earth Summit held in Rio de Janeiro in 1992. It is worth noting that since 1992, C02 emissions have increased by 3% in OECD countries and by 10% in the Developing Countries, with coal accounting for nearly 40% of the total.
A wide range of technologies are discussed, together with their costs. The technologies considered include advanced pulverized fuel systems, integrated gasification combined cycles, fluidized bed combustion and gasification systems, fuel cells, and co-utilization of coal or residual oil with biomass. The outstanding technical difficulties are presented and the non-technical barriers to development are discussed. The options for efficiency improvement and systems integration to achieve target efficiencies are identified and discussed within the limits of lead-time, cost and environmental constraints.