SOFIA (Reuters) - Japan’s Toshiba Corp will carry out a feasibility study for the possible construction of a coal-fired thermal power plant with carbon capture and storage (CCS) facilities in Bulgaria, the company said on Tuesday.
The project is part of the efforts of the European Union member state to boost energy efficiency and reduce greenhouse gases in line with the block’s climate change policies.
Thermal power utilities account for some 50 percent of electricity generation in the Balkan country.
Toshiba has been picked to check whether a CCS power plant can be built in the Maritsa East lignite coal mining complex in southern Bulgaria, which generates 30 percent of the country’s electricity.
The study, to be conducted together with Schlumberger Carbon Services, Sofia University and Taisei Corporation, will run from July 2011 to the end of March 2012, Toshiba said in a statement.
Bulgaria controls one of the three plants in the coal complex — the 1,581 megawatt Maritsa East Two. The other two generators are privately-owned.
Energy company AES Corp launched in June its thermal plant with a net capacity of 600 megawatts, while last month U.S. fund Contour Global wrapped up a deal with Italy’s Enel for the purchase of the 908 megawatt Maritsa East Three.
Reporting by Irina Ivanova; editing by Keiron Henderson