Funding canceled for clean coal plant | Science News

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Funding canceled for clean coal plant

Feds back out of $800 million remainder, citing doubts on ability to meet spending deadline

coal power plant

Plans to retrofit this coal power plant in Meredosia, Ill., with technology to enable it to cleanly separate carbon pollution and store it underground have been scrapped after the U.S. Department of Energy cut funding for the project.

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Under a looming budget deadline, the U.S. Department of Energy has dropped its plan to give $1 billion in funding to FutureGen 2.0, a $1.65 billion clean coal project in Illinois.

The project would have retrofitted a coal power plant with new technology that sequestered 1.1 million metric tons of carbon pollution underground each year. The funding cut most likely means the project will not continue. 

The money, awarded to the FutureGen Alliance in 2010, was set to expire September 2015. But the alliance had only used $200 million to date, and the department was not convinced that FutureGen could spend the rest and complete the project by the deadline.

In a statement, DOE Press Secretary Bill Gibbons called the move an “unfortunate outcome.”

The $200 million already spent paid for advancements in the design of the plant and carbon storage monitoring. 

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