Ground breaks on $67M carbon-capture plant in Springfield

carbon capture
Photo credit Getty Images

Carbon capture could be a way of the future for utilities, and Springfield appears to be on the leading edge. That’s because it has its own utilities.

Groundbreaking was Thursday for a federal-and-state funded plant. The US Department of Energy's Lynn Brickett tried to convey how big a deal this is.

“This was funded many years ago,” Brickett said at a news conference after the groundbreaking. “Congress gave us money to do this, so it was specifically targeting large pilots. This project is 10 megawatts. Chemical engineering does a ten times scale-up. So 10 megawatts becomes 100 megawatts, and then you can scale up those units.”

“We’re trying to remove carbon, essentially, from our emissions as we generate electricity from coal,” explained Doug Brown, the city’s chief utility engineer. “It's an important project to basically start it at this larger scale, so they can actually scale it up to full-sized installations and when they prove that its economically done, then other companies will jump on board.”

The University of Illinois’ Prairie Research Institute is involved in the $67 million project. One lawmaker said this is almost as big for the U of I as the Illini basketball team’s win over Texas this week.

Featured Image Photo Credit: Getty Images