Coal and biomass to fuels and power

Robert H. Williams, Guangjian Liu, Thomas G. Kreutz, Eric D. Larson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


Systems with CO2 capture and storage (CCS) that coproduce transportation fuels and electricity from coal plus biomass can address simultaneously challenges of climate change from fossil energy and dependence on imported oil. Under a strong carbon policy, such systems can provide competitively clean low-carbon energy from secure domestic feedstocks by exploiting the negative emissions benefit of underground storage of biomass-derived CO2, the low cost of coal, the scale economies of coal energy conversion, the inherently low cost of CO2 capture, the thermodynamic advantages of coproduction, and expected high oil prices. Such systems require much less biomass to make low-carbon fuels than do biofuels processes. The economics are especially attractive when these coproduction systems are deployed as alternatives to CCS for stand-alone fossil fuel power plants. If CCS proves to be viable as a major carbon mitigation option, the main obstacles to deployment of coproduction systems as power generators would be institutional.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)529-553
Number of pages25
JournalAnnual Review of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering
StatePublished - Jul 15 2011

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Chemistry
  • General Chemical Engineering


  • CO capture and storage
  • carbon mitigation
  • coproduction
  • gasification
  • synthetic fuels


Dive into the research topics of 'Coal and biomass to fuels and power'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this