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Greenhouse gas goes underground

American Electric Power announces plans to pump CO2 from waste stream to below surface.


NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- Major electric utility company, American Electric Power, plans to install carbon capture technology on two coal-burning power plants, which will pump the greenhouse-causing gas deep underground, according to a statement from the company.

The company will install the technology at its 1,300-megawatt Mountaineer plant in New Haven, W. Va. in mid-2008, according to a release issued Thursday.

American Electric Power (Charts) estimates that 100,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide will be captured per year and stored in deep saline aquifers at the site, the release said.

The company also plans to install the technology at its 450-megawatt Northeastern Station in Oologah, Okla. in late 2011. Carbon dioxide from that source will be used for enhanced oil recovery, the company disclosed.

The process American Electric Power uses captures CO2 by separating the gas from other emissions in the coal-burning process using chilled ammonia. The chilled ammonia process was developed by Alstrom, the release said.

American Electric Power has an agreement with Alstrom to use the technology, according to the release.

Carbon dioxide is the gas responsible for the greenhouse effect which contributes to global climate change.

AEP competes with Centerpoint Energy Inc. (Charts), Duke Energy Corp. (Charts) and Entergy Corp. (Charts)

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