MANILA: The Asian Development Bank (ADB) on Monday said it has approved a $135 million loan to help China build a coal-fired integrated gasification combined cycle (IGCC) power plant, whose carbon dioxide emission rate is only one tenth of a usual coal-fired plant.
The $419.59 million project, scheduled to be completed in northern city of Tianjin by 2012, will be the first IGCC plant in a developing country and can generate up to 1,470 gigawatt-hours of electricity every year, the Philippines-based development lender said.
Plants using IGCC technology turn coal into a synthetic gas, removing impurities, before the gas is burned in a gas turbine, ADB said, adding that it is more efficient than other clean coal technologies but its adoption has been slow due to high costs and some perceived technology complexity and risks.
ADB said it is providing additional $1.25 million in technical assistance to pave the way for the second and third phases of the program which will result in a scaled-up IGCC plant fitted with carbon capture and storage technology by 2013.
Studies showing that it is now the least-cost option to cut carbon dioxide emissions from coal-fired power plants by up to 90 percent, ADB added.
The bank said the remaining costs of the Tianjin IGCC project will be funded from equity contributions of $84 million, a loan of $195.59 million from a group of local banks, and the grant from ADB's Climate Change Fund.
The ADB loan has a 26-year term, including a grace period of six years, with the interest rate determined in accordance with ADB's LIBOR-based lending facility.
China is among the world's top coal consumers. The government has launched a clean coal power generation program aiming to sharply reduce pollution as well as lower the carbon dioxide emissions.