"Nature has been turning carbon dioxide into a useable product for almost 4 billion years. Now through innovation, we're finding rapid ways to make it happen with new technologies."
Paul Bunje, NRG COSIA Carbon XPRIZE
Today, ENMAX and Capital Power are proud to announce that the 860-megawatt Shepard Energy Centre (Shepard) in southeast Calgary has been chosen as the test site for the natural gas track of the prestigious $20 million
NRG COSIA Carbon XPRIZE a global competition to develop breakthrough technologies that convert carbon dioxide (CO2) into valuable products. Shepard will host the new Alberta Carbon Conversion Technology Centre, as well as provide the flue gas for testing during the NRG COSIA Carbon XPRIZE and for future innovators. Operational in 2015, Shepard features the latest technology and was internationally ranked as one of the
top natural gas-fuelled plants in September 2015.
"At ENMAX, we believe innovation is critical to the future of the energy sector," said Gianna Manes, ENMAX President and CEO. "We are proud to provide access to the Shepard Energy Centre and contribute to this important research during the competition, and as a long-term industrial scale CO2 test facility."
"We are excited the Shepard Energy Centre has been chosen to host Innotech's test site to research converting CO2 emissions into valuable products," said Brian Vaasjo, Capital Power President and CEO. "The NRG COSIA Carbon XPRIZE competition challenges conventional thinking and technology, which is something the entire energy sector will benefit from. These innovative projects will help map a path forward and contribute to building our low-carbon world."
The Alberta Carbon Conversion Technology Centre is an exciting collaboration between the governments of Canada and Alberta, Canada's Oil Sands Innovation Alliance (COSIA), Shepard, InnoTech Alberta and academia for accelerating CO2 reduction, carbon utilization and value-added economic development by allowing companies to demonstrate new technologies in a full-scale production environment. Shepard will be the only operating natural gas-fuelled power plant in the world where multiple advanced carbon utilization technologies can be tested at scale. This is a critical step for innovators globally to bring their breakthrough technology to market.
"Partnership in innovation creates those ecosystems that allow for sharing and expanding the knowledge, skills and the capacity of people and organizations that reach beyond a company, a sector, a province or even a country," said Dan Wicklum, Chief Executive of COSIA. "Innotech Alberta's facility at Shepard is one of the first places in the world to provide at scale testing conditions for converting CO2 into a valuable product. The NRG COSIA Carbon XPRIZE finalists will be the first tenants of this state-of-the-art facility to be able to demonstrate breakthrough energy technologies that could change the world."
The NRG COSIA Carbon XPRIZE is challenging the world to find new ways to address CO2 emissions through carbon conversion. Twenty-seven teams in the semi-final round are vying for 10 spots in the finals, expected to be announced in early 2018. Finalists will share a $2.5 million purse to execute on their submissions. Ultimately, the winning team in both the natural gas and coal tracks will be awarded a $7.5 million grand prize in the spring of 2020.
"This competition was created to challenge and reimagine what the world can do with CO2," said Paul Bunje, Principal and Senior Scientist, Energy & Environment with the XPRIZE Foundation. "Ultimately, by advancing science, research and technology, we can convert emissions into usable products, shifting what is today considered a liability into a valuable resource for the future."
The five-year competition began in 2015, backed by NRG Energy, the leading integrated power company in the U.S, and eight member companies of COSIA: Canadian Natural Resources, CNOOC Nexen, Cenovus, ConocoPhillips Canada, Devon Canada, Imperial Oil, Suncor Energy, and Shell Canada Energy.
ENMAX Corporation, through its subsidiaries, makes, moves and sells electricity to residential, small business and large commercial customers and is headquartered in Calgary, Alberta, with offices in Edmonton. ENMAX Power Corporation owns and operates transmission and distribution infrastructure in Calgary and ENMAX Energy Corporation owns diverse electricity generation facilities throughout the province. Since 2007, ENMAX has been named one of Alberta's Top Employers. ENMAX Energy is currently the retailer of choice for both The City of Calgary and The City of Edmonton.
Capital Power (TSX: CPX) is a growth-oriented North American power producer headquartered in Edmonton, Alberta. The company develops, acquires, operates and optimizes power generation from a variety of energy sources. Capital Power owns more than 3,200 megawatts of power generation capacity at 18 facilities across North America. More than 700 megawatts of owned generation capacity are in advanced development in Alberta and under construction in Kansas.
Customers are free to purchase natural gas services or electricity services from a retailer of their choice. For a list of retailers, visit ucahelps.alberta.ca or call 310-4822 (toll free in Alberta).