Duke Energy, Chinese company signs carbon capture research agreement

Duke Energy (NYSE: DUK) and China Huaneng Group Feb. 13 signed a new, three-year agreement expanding their research cooperation of advanced coal and carbon capture and sequestration technologies.

The two parties initially signed a Memorandum of Understanding in 2009 to pursue high-level discussions and information sharing on a number of renewable and clean-energy fronts. In 2009, Huaneng Group developed a facility that economically captured 120,000 tons of the carbon dioxide per year emitted from the 1,320 MW Shidongkou coal-fired power palnt in China.

The recent expanded agreement calls for an engineering study to determine the potential feasibility of applying Huaneng Group's low-cost carbon capture process at Unit 3 of Duke Energy's 3,145 MW Gibson Station in Indiana. There are no plans to make any modifications to the power plant at this stage of the study.

Funding for the project will be provided by the U.S.-China Clean Energy Research Center (CERC), which was established by the two countries in 2009 for such collaborative endeavors.

Duke and Huaneng will create a Joint Working Group that will begin meeting in the near future to coordinate the project.

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