Consol Energy is to team up with the US Dept of Energy to demonstrate an integrated multi-pollutant control system at a 100 MW coal fired plant in New York, the AES Greenidge plant. The system will be the first to reduce NOx, SO2, other acidic gases, Hg, and dust from smaller coal plants at a lower cost than the cost of controlling NOx and SO2 separately. It will be funded partly by money originally allocated to the creation of clean coal technology. It is now accepted that coal burn in existing stations will be the backbone of power generation for years to come.

Among the innovations to be installed are a catalytic NOx reduction technology that works inside the plant’s ductwork, a low NOx combustor that burns a coal/biomass mix, and a low cost flue gas scrubber. 1100 or so coal fired plants account for over 50 per cent of electricity consumption in the USA. The Greenidge unit is representative of 500 of these, too small to bear the cost of conventional scrubbing, which might otherwise have to be retired or fuel-switched.