NEWS RELEASE                                                                                           APRIL 2012

More Than 10,000 Active Environmental Projects for the World’s 7,000 Coal-fired Power Boilers 

The combination of a building boom for new coal-fired power plants in Asia plus environmental upgrades in Europe and the Americas has led to a record number of environmental projects in planning and construction. This is the conclusion reached by the McIlvaine Company in Utility Environmental Upgrade Tracking Systems.

The project values are fairly evenly spread across the globe. The reason is that the developed countries, while not building new coal-fired power plants, are spending lots of money to clean up existing power plants. In the developing world, there is a great deal of new coal-fired capacity underway.

The typical U.S. coal-fired power plant has embarked on one project to reduce mercury and air toxics, another to reduce NOx and SO2, a third to improve energy efficiency, a fourth to meet water intake standards, and a fifth to renovate ash ponds.

East European power plants are moving forward with environmental upgrades to meet European Union (EU) standards. Meanwhile, present EU members are dealing with tightening environmental and greenhouse gas emission limits. In China, India, Vietnam and many other Asian countries, the bulk of the projects are associated with new coal-fired power plants.

The projects are very sizable. A 1000 MW coal-fired power plant in the U.S. can expect to spend $400,000/MW or $400 million just to meet the latest air quality standards. Some power plants are switching from once-through water to cooling towers. This type of project is also costly.

In the U.S., the decision makers include some of the large utilities with their own engineering groups (e.g. Southern). They also include the major architect engineering firms such as Black & Veatch, Sargent & Lundy and Burns & McDonnell. There is another group including Bechtel, Kiewit and Shaw which function in both an advisory and EPC role.

In China the five large utility companies are not only involved in operations but also in design and supply.

Larger system suppliers such as Babcock & Wilcox, Alstom, Hitachi, Mitsubishi, Longking and Doosan are willing to take on turn-key responsibilities and, thus eliminate the need for the initial A/E analysis and bid preparation.

In Europe, the big system suppliers are most likely to deal directly with the utilities. Some utilities such as Eon and Suez headquartered in Europe have operations in many countries.

For more information on these projects, click on:

Utility Environmental Upgrade Tracking System, click on:

Chinese Utility Plans, click on: