Displacement of fossil fuel-based power through biomass co-firing could reduce the greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from fossil fuels. In this study, data-intensive techno-economic models were developed to evaluate different co-firing technologies as well as the configurations of these technologies. The models were developed to study 60 different scenarios involving various biomass feedstocks (wood chips, wheat straw, and forest residues) co-fired either with coal in a 500 MW subcritical pulverized coal (PC) plant or with natural gas in a 500 MW natural gas combined cycle (NGCC) plant to determine their technical potential and costs, as well as to determine environmental benefits. The results obtained reveal that the fully paid-off coal-fired power plant co-fired with forest residues is the most attractive option, having levelized costs of electricity (LCOE) of $53.12–$54.50/MW h and CO2 abatement costs of $27.41–$31.15/tCO2. When whole forest chips are co-fired with coal in a fully paid-off plant, the LCOE and CO2 abatement costs range from $54.68 to $56.41/MW h and $35.60 to $41.78/tCO2, respectively. The LCOE and CO2 abatement costs for straw range from $54.62 to $57.35/MW h and $35.07 to $38.48/tCO2, respectively.
- Biomass co-firing;