Bechtel Partners with Drax to Design and Optimize BECCS Plants in Europe, America

Bechtel and Drax have agreed to join efforts in identifying new sites in Europe and America to build BECCS plants and also optimise the design of current plants integrated with carbon capture and storage technology

Drax is collaborating on a BECCS project in Humber, a British industrial hub. Credit: Drax website

Drax is collaborating on a BECCS project in Humber, a British industrial hub. Credit: Drax website

Bechtel, a leading company of power plant engineering and construction has partnered with Drax, a renewable energy company to design bioenergy manufacturing plants integrated with carbon capture and storage technology. The focus of the partnership will be to study strategically important sites for new bioenergy plus carbon capture and storage technology (BECCS) plants in North America and Western Europe. The companies will also pool in efforts to optimise the design of current BECCS plants to maximise their efficiency, performance and cost.

Jamie Cochrane, Bechtel Manager of Energy Transition, said: “Technological advancements have created new opportunities to improve how we bring power to communities worldwide. We are resolved to work with our customers on projects that deliver effective ways to contribute to a clean energy future. Tackling the big global challenges related to climate change is key to meeting aggressive environmental targets and we are proud to partner with Drax to optimize design and explore locations for the new generation of BECCS facilities.”

In addition to this partnership, Drax has also undertaken a major decarbonisation project: converting its North Yorkshire power station in England to use biomass instead of coal to produce electricity. Drax has called this the largest decarbonisation project in Europe. Jason Shipstone, Drax Group Chief Innovation Officer, said: “Negative emissions technologies such as BECCS are crucial in tackling the global climate crisis and at Drax we’re planning to retrofit this to our UK power station, demonstrating global climate leadership in the transformation of a former coal-fired power station.”

Drax has a wide portfolio of renewable electricity plans across England and Scotland. 5% of the UK’s electricity is supplied by one of Drax’s renewable energy-powered electricity plants in Selby, North Yorkshire. Apart from the UK, Drax also has renewable energy assets in America and Canada. Their plants in these two countries have the capacity to produce almost 5 million tonnes of biomass annually. This biomass has found customers in the form of renewable power generators and operators in Europe and Asia which use biomass to produce energy. Bechtel has also been expanding in the renewable sector. It has built over 40 CCS plants for natural gas plants, refineries and gas processing plants in Europe, UK and America.

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