(547c) Evaluation of CO2 Capture and Storage Systems for Existing Thermoelectric Plants in Mexico

Authors: 
Palacios-Rosas, A., Universidad de las Americas Puebla
Ramírez-Corona, N., Universidad de las Americas Puebla
Álvarez-Alonso, P. E., Universidad de las Americas Puebla
Global warming has increased in recent years due to greenhouse gas emissions derived from all human activities, being the power generation from fossil fuels the largest source of CO2 emissions. In Mexico, according to the Federal Electricity Commission (CFE acronym in Spanish), in 2012 there was an installed capacity for electricity generation of 53.114 GW, from which approximately 72.6% of the total electric power generation came from thermoelectric power plants, whether conventional, combined cycle or internal combustion.

CO2 capture and storage has been recognized as a safe and environmentally acceptable solution for continue using fossil fuels with minimal CO2 emissions. Among the existing capture technologies, post-combustion capture by chemical absorption is the most popular, as it may be retrofitted to existing power plants. The main objective of this work was to determine the feasibility of their implementation in Mexico, bearing in mind the installed thermoelectric capacity. The required potential for CO2 capture, as well as the energy and solvent demand during the capture processes were estimated for each existing power plant. All the estimations are computed using models form the literature, considering the different fuels and modes of energy production.

Furthermore, as the Mexican economy is largely based on oil production, the CO2 recovered from power plants can be used for improving the oil recovery from near-exhausted wells. Emissions from the stationary sources can be reduced by capturing CO2 and then sequestering it from the atmosphere through geological storage. Many oil and gas reservoirs are excellent candidates for geological storage, since CO2 can be injected into these reservoirs to provide additional pressure used for the oil recovery, due to CO2 reduces the oil viscosity and improving its displacement to the production well. Capturing CO2 from the selected sources and storing in the suitable sites are critical for developing a cost-effective process. In view of the estimated capture capacity, linear optimization models are formulated to determine the best distribution paths, considering the energy expenditure in direct CO2 transportation from power plants to sequestration sites, as well as the existence of intermediate distribution hubs.