Today, we celebrate the third operating anniversary of Petra Nova, the world’s largest coal-fired power plant post-combustion carbon dioxide (CO2) capture system. Since coming online on January 10, 2017, the Petra Nova project has captured over 3.9 million short (US) tons of CO2, which was used to produce over 4.2 million barrels of oil through enhanced oil recovery (EOR). These achievements demonstrate how carbon-capture technologies can enhance the long-term viability and sustainability of coal-fired power plants.
Learn more about the project and its key milestones below:
The Petra Nova Project
As a part of the U.S. Government’s Clean Coal Power Initiative program, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) provided a $190 million grant to the Petra Nova project with the goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions, and the National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL) helped to manage the project. Owned and operated by NRG Energy, Inc. and JX Nippon Oil and Gas Exploration Corporation, the Petra Nova project successfully retrofit carbon-capture technology onto a unit at the coal-fired W.A. Parish Generating Station located southwest of Houston, TX.
Petra Nova is designed to capture approximately 90 percent of the CO2 from a 240-megawatt equivalent flue gas slipstream—which is approximately 1.6 million tons of CO2 per year. The captured CO2 is compressed, dried, and transported to the West Ranch Oil Field in Jackson County, TX. Then, the CO2 is used in EOR to boost oil production.
- July 2014: DOE—in partnership with NRG Energy, Inc. and JX Nippon—announced the start of construction on the Petra Nova project.
- January 2017: NRG Energy, Inc. and JX Nippon completed the project and commercial operations commenced.
- April 2017: U.S. Secretary of Energy Rick Perry attended the ribbon cutting ceremony for the Petra Nova project.
- August 2017: Petra Nova was selected as POWER magazine’s Plant of the Year.
- October 2017: Petra Nova reached a major milestone, capturing more than 1 million tons of CO2 used in EOR.
- December 2019: Since commencing operations, Petra Nova captured over 3.9 million short (US) tons of CO2 and West Ranch Oil Field has produced over 4.2 million barrels of oil through EOR.
- January 2020: Happy third operating anniversary, Petra Nova!
Keep your eye on the Office of Fossil Energy’s website and NETL's website for updates on Petra Nova’s continued advancements.