The Amager Ressource Center is København’s famous waste-to-energy facility. Motivated by the ambition of the Municipality to become CO2-neutral by 2025, in 2019 ARC started investigating the possibility of applying carbon capture and storage/utilisation technology (CCS/CCU) to their waste-to-energy plant.
Waste-to-energy plants are particularly suited for CCS/CCU because they have many pathways to recuperate heat streams needed to operate and minimize the energy consumption in relation to carbon capture. The principle behind is to capture the CO2 from the smoke leaving the incinerators by spraying the smoke with a liquid that binds the CO2. Such a process enables to capture the CO2 and have CO2-free smoke leaving the chimney. The CO2 is then stored, but the long-term plan is to use it as a fuel replacing oil.
In February 2020, a study conducted and completed by ARC showed it is technically and economically feasible to couple CCS/CCU technology to its plant. This means that the 480,000 tons of CO2 emitted every year by ARC can be captured by the facility itself in a cost-effective way, and thus deliver CO2 reductions at the lowest possible cost to the citizens.
“Despite all the efforts towards a green transition, there will continue to be waste, which is why we are looking for solutions that can reduce our CO2 emissions,” – Peter Blinksbjerg, chemical engineer and quality manager at Amager Resource Center
The ground-breaking ambition of this project is, in cooperation with DTU-CERE, Rambøll, and Union Engineering, to demonstrate that carbon capture at ARC can be done at net-zero energy consumption. In other words, the project aims optimize the energy consumption of every step of the CCS process to achieve the cheapest energy-consumption CCS process.
1st Mile’s work with ARC
The first step to implement the project is the demonstration of the technical and economic feasibility of the Carbon Capture technology, meaning that it is achievable at an acceptable cost both for waste producers and heat consumers (the citizens).
This is why the EUDP funding of DKK 30 mio that ARC was granted after collaborating with 1st Mile, have a key role for demonstrating the feasibility of cost-effective carbon capture on waste-to-energy plants, and mark a critical milestone and decision point for full-scale deployment of decarbonization of the waste-to-energy industry, in Denmark, Europe and globally. The final outcome of the project will be a decision base for ARC to decide upon an investment in a full-size Carbon Capture plant to capture all of the 480,000 tons of CO2 emitted by ARC every year.
“It’s fantastic. It will be the first of its kind in Denmark, and the prospects are enormous. It points in the right direction. ARC’s ambition is to manage waste in a completely carbon neutral way, making a serious and significant contribution to realizing the vision of the world’s first carbon neutral capital” – Jacob H. Simonsen, director at ARC