Behind the Scenes at the Clean Coal Plant in Kemper County

Tonight, we start our two part series on the much talked about Kemper County Energy Facility.
News 25’s Kristen Durand spoke with Anthony Wilson, president of Mississippi Power. She takes us beyond the gates of the plant that the company says is the future of energy.
Mississippi Power’s clean coal power plant in Kemper County has produced natural gas energy for a little more than two years. By the end of next month, the company hopes the plant will be fully operational, running exclusively on a Mississippi resource lignite, or young coal, which they say makes for a cleaner and more cost effective energy source. President and CEO of Mississippi Power Anthony Wilson said, “It’s plentiful. It’s right here on the plant site and we’re able to use it. In other words, a plentiful resource that has no other use and we’re using it to convert into energy and through the chemical process, we’re actually taking that energy, stripping out all the pollutants and it’s actually stripping out about 60-65 percent of the C02. What that’s ultimately going to create is a carbon footprint that’s actually cleaner than a natural gas plant.”
During the gas cleanup process, several components are removed, but they’re not going to waste. Carbon dioxide is piped out and sold to a company that will use it to produce more oil in Mississippi. Mississippi Power Spokesman Jeff Shepard said, “We anticipate it’s going to create another two million barrels of oil per year that will be produced here in Mississippi. And then we have ammonia and hydrogen sulfide and we already have contracts with a company to take those two products as well and those are found agricultural uses and chemical industrial uses for those products as well.”
Mississippi Power says revenue streams from the sales of these by-products will ultimately offset project costs, benefiting customers. The massive project in its entirety, including the lignite mine, is roughly 30,000 acres and the plant itself sits on 3,000 acres.
New technology created by Mississippi Power allows the continued use of coal as a fuel source, quickly gaining international recognition. “We’ve actually had quite a large number of companies and countries come to this site. Last count we had about 42 international visitors come here and there’s a lot of interest around the world in this technology. I think it’s going to be a way forward for coal,” said Wilson.
The countdown is on to the October 31st deadline for the plant to become fully operational.
Join us Wednesday night for a closer look at project costs and what that means for Mississippi Power customer rates.

Categories: Local News, News

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *