World's Largest Power Plant CCS Project Is Capturing Carbon

ATLANTA, June 13, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Southern Company (NYSE: SO) announced today that its 25-megawatt carbon capture and storage facility is operating and capturing carbon dioxide.


Located at Plant Barry near Mobile, Ala., the CCS facility is the world's largest for a coal-fired generating power plant. It will capture approximately 150,000 tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) annually – or the equivalent of emissions from 25 MW – for permanent underground storage in a deep saline geologic formation.

"This is a significant milestone in our continuing efforts to research, develop and implement 21st century coal technologies," said Southern Company Chairman, President and CEO Thomas A. Fanning. "Because coal is a low-cost and abundant natural resource, it is important for Southern Company and the industry to preserve coal as a fuel source."

Commencing operations of the Barry CCS project further solidifies Southern Company's position as the industry leader in carbon capture and storage research and development. In addition to the Barry CCS project, the company is:

  • Managing the U.S. Department of Energy's National Carbon Capture Center in Alabama, testing the next generation of technologies to capture carbon dioxide emissions.
  • Building a commercial-scale, 582-MW generating plant in Kemper County, Miss., using local lignite and the company's Transport Integrated Gasification (TRIG™) technology, with 65 percent carbon capture and re-use.
  • Drilling wells to assess geologic suitability for carbon storage at other power plants
  • Partnering with universities to train the next generation of CCS engineers and to provide advanced geologic testing capabilities


Carbon dioxide at the Barry facility is being captured using Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd. technology KM-CDR™, which uses an advanced amine solvent. The process begins with coal combustion which generates electricity, leaving a flue gas. The CO2 from the flue gas reacts with the amine solvent before being captured from the flue gas. It is then compressed, making it ready for pipeline transport.

Captured CO2 from the plant will be supplied to the Southeast Regional Carbon Sequestration Partnership, or SECARB, for transport by pipeline and injection 9,500 feet underground at a site within the Citronelle Oil Field. The site, about 11 miles from the plant, is operated by Denbury Resources.

The CO2 will remain below the surface, permanently trapped in the geological formation into which it was injected and is not being used for enhanced oil recovery. A characterization well previously drilled within the field by SECARB revealed excellent characteristics for safe geologic storage.

Plant Barry is owned and operated by Alabama Power. The CCS facility is owned and operated by Southern Company Services.  Both Alabama Power and SCS are subsidiaries of Southern Company.

About Southern Company

With 4.4 million customers and more than 42,000 megawatts of generating capacity, Atlanta-based Southern Company (NYSE: SO) is the premier energy company serving the Southeast. A leading U.S. producer of electricity, Southern Company owns electric utilities in four states and a growing competitive generation company, as well as fiber optics and wireless communications. Southern Company brands are known for excellent customer service, high reliability and retail electric prices that are below the national average. Southern Company was named the World's Most Admired Electric and Gas Utility by Fortune magazine in 2011, and is consistently listed among the top U.S. electric service providers in customer satisfaction by the American Customer Satisfaction Index. Visit our website at

SOURCE Southern Company

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