Due to its history and environmental impact, coal is often overlooked in discussions of the energy mix. But the reality is very different – coal is the second fuel in primary energy and the first in power generation. And neither is it fading away – growth of coal use has been greater than any other fuel, driven by demand especially from China.
These were the words of the IEA Executive Director, Nobuo Tanaka, when he spoke at the opening session of the CCT2011 conference in Zaragoza on Monday 9 May.
This highly successful conference was organised by the IEA Clean Coal Centre and the Instituto de Carboquímica (ICB), Zaragoza, on behalf of the Grupo Español del Carbón.
The conference papers and presentations are now available to all, on entering the conference system. There were sessions on:
Ash and slag
Carbon capture and storage
Carbon capture solvents
Carbonate cycling and solid sorbents
Chemical looping combustion
IGCC and precombustion carbon capture
International and regional perspectives
Mercury and flue gas cleaning
Over 230 engineers and scientists attended from nearly 30 countries, including some from major developing countries such as China, Brazil, South Africa and India and, from the other side of the world, Korea, Australia and New Zealand. They spent 3 days exchanging information about the latest technological developments in clean coal technologies as well as networking and discussing cooperation in R&D to solve global problems.
From almost 150 oral and poster presentations, it is clear that world wide technical development is accelerating as governments and industry in partnership pour more resources into cleaner fossil fuel use, with CCS becoming the centre of efforts.
In summing up the conference and the changes since 2009, John Topper, Managing Director of the IEA Clean Coal Centre, noted that:
There is still no single winning clean coal technology but research on 2nd generation technologies is advancing.
There is no clear picture now about technology preferences in different regions.
More projects are underway but also some have stopped. There is still no large full CCS chain coal based project in operation
Regulation is still not widespread, finance remains poor, and there are public acceptance problems.
Join us for CCT2013 which will take place in Thessaloniki, Greece, in May 2013. The hosts will be the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, the University of Western Macedonia, the National Technical University of Athens, and the Centre for Research and Technology Hellas (CERTH), Institute for Solid Fuels Technology and Applications. Check www.iea-coal.org for announcements.