Saturday, June 20, 2009

MIT & Entergy Produce Blueprint to Reduce CO2 Emissions

The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Energy Initiative (EI) and Entergy Corporation have teamed up to produce a blueprint for how to reduce carbon dioxide emissions from coal. In March, MIT invited 54 top scientists, policy-makers, industry executives and non-profit leaders to participate in symposium to devise strategies on how to address coal's role in global warming.

Entergy believes that coal plants aren't going away anytime soon because they provide inexpensive sources of baseload electricity both in the United States and abroad. If the U.S. ignores coal in its efforts to curb global warming, the nation's efforts will be rendered useless because China is building more coal plants and needs a technological solution to make coal burn cleaner.

MIT organized the conference, selected participants and published the report. The goal was to find out what's technologically feasible, how low coal emissions can potentially go, and what it would cost to reach these goals. Coal emissions can be reduced by improving the efficiency of existing coal plants, capturing and sequestering carbon dioxide, using bio-mass to supplement coal as a fuel or rebuilding existing coal plants.

The MIT report says that the government needs to spend $12 billion to $15 billion over the next decade to "dramatically expand" programs to demonstrate large-scale, sustained carbon capture and storage technology for existing plants, plus $1 billion annually for ten years to create other options. (

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