ECN publication
Technologieverkenning. Kansrijke nieuwe technieken voor minder emissies naar de lucht in 2030
Published by: Publication date:
ECN Policy Studies 13-8-2009
ECN report number: Document type:
ECN-E--09-047 ECN publication
Number of pages: Full text:
114 Download PDF  

To obtain a sustainable situation in the field of air emissions (including greenhouse gases) it remains imperative to take action. At the request of the Dutch Ministry of Housing, Spatial Planning and the Environment (VROM) ECN Policy Studies has conducted a survey study on new, improved and promising environmental technologies for energy and industry. The Dutch government formulated ambitions in the NMP4 (VROM, 2001). One of the goals is that approximately 95% of the natural environment is protected. Prevention of environment-related health effects is a second goal. Translated into emission targets, this means that air pollutant emissions must still be substantially reduced compared to the emissions in 2005. The reduction rates in 2030 compared to 2005 are: for NOx 65 to 80%, for SO2 39 to 62%, for NMVOC 31 to 71%, for NH3 59 to 77% and for particulate matter 75 to 87%. Since a safe emission level for particulate matter probably does not exist, a further reduction after 2030 is required. For the main greenhouse gas, CO2, the NMP4 target entails a reduction of 40 to 60% in 2030, with continuous reduction efforts for CO2 beyond 2030. This study contains more than 80 techniques that are currently under development, including new prevention or add-on reduction techniques and new production methodologies. Moreover, existing techniques are available that can, possibly at higher costs per kg reduction, be applied in other places. Based on the inventory it is concluded that it is technically possible for the energy and industry sector to achieve the NMP4 reduction targets. Application of new prevention or add-on reduction techniques and new production methodologies are essential to obtain the required emission levels. A significant reduction of CO2 emissions can be obtained via energy saving, renewable energy and CO2 capture and storage (CCS). There are also other ways to generate electricity more efficiently. With respect to emission of methane (CH4), its (catalytic) decomposition in low concentrations can be studied. As for nitrous oxide (N2O), the last major source of emission, the caprolactam production, can be addressed in cooperation with industry. Air pollution caused by NOx can be further reduced by means of ultra low NOx burners, flue gas cleaning with SCR and various reducing agents or catalytic absorption systems. Also fuel cells, with minimal NOx emission, can play a role. SO2 emissions can be reduced by using scrubbers for process emissions as well. Coal fired power stations require an SO2 removal yield beyond the reach of current scrubbers. Coal gasification can attribute to lower SO2 emissions as well. NH3 emission in the industry sector is limited (1% of the Dutch emission). An option would be to place ammonia strippers or absorbers at some locations. The NMVOC emission can be reduced by active policy in the field of leak detection and measures on low concentrations of NMVOC in suction air. For particulate matter (and not volatile heavy metals) the main option is the application of fabric filters at a larger scale. Volatile heavy metals, such as mercury, can be removed by means of activated charcoal. For some sectors such as heavy metals, refineries and carbon black production, a long term vision on desirable changes and process innovations is required in consultation with the companies concerned.

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