Cornerstone - Summer 2014 - (Page 72)
TE CH N O L O G Y FR ONT IE R S
The Global Need for Clean
Coal Technologies and J-COAL's
Roadmap to Get There
By Uichiro Yoshimura
Former Director, Japan Coal Energy Center
Director, Japan Coal Energy Center
lobal coal use has rapidly expanded in recent decades-
from 2.2 billion tonnes of oil equivalent (toe) in 1990 to
3.7 billion toe in 2011.1 Much of the increase in coal
utilization was from the construction of new coal-fired power
plants; global coal-based electricity generation increased from
just over 4400 TWh in 1990 to approximately 9100 TWh in
2011. Under the International Energy Agency's (IEA's) New
Policies Scenario, in 2035 there will be more than 12,300
TWh of global coal-based electricity, an increase by a factor
of approximately 1.4.1 Coal's role in globally supplying primary energy can be largely attributed to the fact that there
are long-term, widely distributed coal reserves and the cost
of coal-based energy is affordable. As a result of these factors,
coal's role in the global energy mix is not expected to change
for the foreseeable future.
Coal's energy-security-related advantages, such as the stability
associated with long-term supplies, lack of price fluctuations, and
reliability as a base electricity source, are especially important in
Japan, where nearly all energy is imported; coal has historically
provided approximately 20% of Japan's primary energy. Taking
into account the very low capacity factor of Japan's nuclear
power plants since the Great East Japan Earthquake in 2011
and also concerns about the desire to reduce CO2 emissions
the Japanese government had been reviewing its national
Basic Energy Plan, which was approved by the cabinet recently.
Because coal use is projected to continue, reducing the associated environmental impacts is an important aspect of the plan.
advantages ... are especially
important in Japan, where nearly all
energy is imported."
Driven by our own energy challenges and the strong need to
rely on all available energy options to ensure energy security,
Japan must continue to aggressively support research, development, and deployment of clean coal technologies (CCTs),
which are critical to addressing the environmental impacts
associated with coal utilization. In addition, because coal will
continue to be increasingly deployed around the world, there
is a major opportunity for the CCTs developed in Japan to be
deployed globally. The Japan Coal Energy Center (J-COAL) has
examined the CCT needs for Japan and the world and has
recently updated our CCT roadmap to facilitate the research,
development, and deployment of such technologies.
UNDERSTANDING THE NEED FOR
CLEAN COAL TECHNOLOGIES
Japan's coal-fired power plants are some of the most efficient
in the world. The steam turbine at J-Power's ultra-supercritical
Isogo plant is shown above.
The need for CCTs is global and is largely driven by various
regulations and the desire to reduce environmental impacts
associated with coal-based power production and coal utilization. The needs are not universal; in emerging economies there
may be an opportunity to employ CCTs to newly built plants.
However, in developed countries, where electricity growth is
slow, and for the existing fleet of plants in emerging economies, technologies that can be retrofit will be necessary to
meet various national and international goals and regulations.
Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Cornerstone - Summer 2014
From the Editor: Water Crisis Calls for Common Action
Cover Story: Shifting the Paradigms of Health and Safety in Mining
Commitment to Safety
Modern Energy: The “Golden Thread” That Connects People, Economies, and Progress
Studying the Dominance
of Coal in China’s Energy Mix
Advancing the Alleviation of Energy Poverty
Energy Poverty in India and
What’s Needed to Address It
Balancing South Africa’s Energy Poverty and Climate Change Commitments
Europe Struggles to Pay Its Energy Bill
Shenhua Group’s Preemptive Risk Control System: An Effective Approach for Coal Mine Safety Management
Evaluating Safety and Health
in Australia’s Mining Sector
CORESafety®: A System to Overcome the Plateau in U.S. Mine Safety and Health Management
Sustainable Charcoal: A Key Component of Total Energy Access?
An Analysis of the Interdependence Between China’s Economy and Coal
Synergetic Technologies for
Coal and Gas Extraction in China
The Global Need for Clean
Coal Technologies and J-COAL’s Roadmap to Get There
Cornerstone - Summer 2014
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