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More China’s coal gasification and Coal-to-X plans will be shared at World Clean Coal Conference, China 2015!
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Apr. 28, 2016





Apr. 3, 2016





。 200万吨/年煤炭间接液化示范项目由内蒙古伊泰煤制油有限责任公司实施建设。内蒙古伊泰煤制油有限责任公司创立于2006年3月,注册资本为23.529亿元人民币,是由内蒙古伊泰集团有限公司(持股9.5%)、内蒙古伊泰煤炭股份有限公司(持股51%)与内蒙古矿业(集团)有限责任公司(持股39.5%)联合组建的股份制企业。


GE to Provide Wastewater Treatment Technology for Chinese Coal-to-Chemical Plant
Apr. 26, 2016

To help meet new regulations governing wastewater treatment at Chinese coal-to-chemical plants, a facility in Yulin City will install GE’s (NYSE: GE) advanced zero liquid discharge (ZLD) technology. GE’s ZLD evaporator and crystallizer system will eliminate liquid discharge of waste and enable water reuse at the Shaanxi Future Energy Chemical Co., Ltd. coal-to-chemical plant in Shaanxi Province, China.

China is one of the world's largest producers of coal, and coal-fired power plants provide the majority of the country’s electricity. Coal also serves as a vital feedstock and is converted into a wide variety of chemical and petroleum products. Under China’s new regulations, including the Water Pollution Action Plan, the New Environmental Protection Law and China’s 13th Five-Year Plan, these plants must eliminate the liquid discharge of wastewater into the environment and a ZLD system must be installed to obtain a permit for these plants.

The Hongdun facility is a coal-to-liquid project where Shaanxi Future Energy Chemical converts coal into a variety of oil products. GE’s wastewater treatment system includes a vapor recompression brine concentrator followed by a crystallizer, providing a proven and cost-effective ZLD solution. The equipment is expected to be delivered in mid-2016, with commissioning in March 2017. Once operational, the HongDun Wastewater Treatment Facility will treat wastewater feed at a rate of 40 m3/hr.

“This project is the sixth of this kind in China for GE in recent years and builds on our reputation as a premier ZLD solution provider worldwide. It is indicative of China’s desire to use innovative methods, such as zero liquid discharge wastewater treatment technology, to expand the coal-to-chemical industry while minimizing environmental impact,” said Kevin Cassidy, global leader, engineered systems—water and process technologies for GE Power.

Coal-to-olefin Projects still Popular in China over Next 5 YRS
Dec. 17, 2015

Many enterprises still have a zest for building and further developing coal-to-olefin projects during the “13th Five-Year Plan” period (2016-2020), though such projects shrank notably in plans drafted by the local governments coal-rich Xinjiang, Shanxi, Shaanxi and Inner Mongolia.

Shaanxi Yanchang Petroleum Group would quicken the pace of building coal-to-methanol and dimethyl ether/methanol to olefins (DMTO) projects in Fuxian county in Yan’an, with capacity at 1.8 million tonnes per annum (Mtpa) and 600,000 tonnes per annum (600 Ktpa), respectively, said the company’s Chief Coal Chemical Expert Li Dapeng on December 11.

As constructions have been delayed, Yanchang Petroleum aimed to finish these projects in the next five years.

Having achieved substantial economic yields in its first production line of the Yulin coal chemical project since commercial operation started in 2014, China National Coal Group would start the second production line during the “13th Five-Year Plan” period.

That would mainly include coal-to-methane, DMTO, coal-based polypropylene (PP) and polyethylene (PE) projects, with capacity at 1.8 Mtpa, 600,000 Ktpa, 300,000 Ktpa and 300,000 Ktpa, separately.

Shaanxi Coal & Chemical Industry Group also considered it a good timing to expand coal-to-olefin projects. The company plans to accelerate the building of 300,000-Ktpa coal-to-glycol at Binchang and 700,000-Ktpa coal-to-olefin projects at Pucheng during the “13th Five-Year Plan” period.

Shandong-based Yankuang Group, parent of Yanzhou Coal Mining Co., Ltd., planned to develop refined processing technologies for coal-based liquids, as well as MTO and MTP processes and key equipment and technologies during the period, according to Vice General Manager Sun Qiwen.

In addition, top miner Shenhua Group would invest more in coal chemical projects, aiming to build three major coal-to-olefin bases in Ningdong, Yulin and Baotou in the next five to ten years.

It planned to build two MTO projects, designed capacity at 680,000 Ktpa and 700,000 Ktpa, in Xinjiang and Baotou, and a 1.4-Mtpa pyrolysis gas-to-olefin project in Ningdong.

It also planned PP and PE facilities, with capacity at 600,000 Ktpa and 450,000 Ktpa, respectively.

During the “13th Five-Year Plan” period, China will further promote coal-to-olefin projects in in Xinjiang (Zhundong), Shanxi, western and eastern Inner Mongolia, Ningxia (Ningdong), Shaanxi (Yuheng) and Anhui (Zhong’an), with combined capacity totaling 13.92 Mtpa.

By 2020, total capacity of coal-to-olefin projects in China was expected to be 20 Mtpa, accounting for 25-35% of the total olefin capacity.

Shenhua Xinjiang, Integrated CTO Project, Ready for Trial Production
Apr. 13, 2016

Shenhua Xinjiang Coal-based New Materials Project has entered into its final test before the official start-up on Apr 12, which is of large possibility to see in May 2016. Commercial sales would take a month or two from the start-up, and CCFGroup estimate the product to be supplied to the market in July 2016.

Located in Urumqi, Xinjiang located coal-based new materials project is invested by Shenhua Group Corporation Limited, with total funding of 22.879 billion China yuan, and will reach the largest scale of coal-chemical industry in Xinjiang.

The plant will be able to produce 1,800,000mtpa methanol through GE coal gasification technology, along with 680,000mtpa methanol-to-olefins (MTO) and 320,000mtpa low-density polyethylene (LDPE) and 360,000mtpa polypropylene (PP) production capacity.

The coal-to chemical industry is high water consuming, as coal-based project is demanded by the Ministry of Environment Protection (MEP) to adopt water recycling system for lower pollution. The investment on environment protection facilities takes 10% of total funding of around 2 billion yuan, in order to reach the goal of increasingly stricter emission standard by China authorities.

“Xinjiang has up to 40% of total coal resources in China, and materials made from coal with high added value could be transported to more developed Southeastern coastal regions and make a full use of Xinjiang local coal resources through clean and efficient conversion.” Said Peng Xiaochun, Party Secretary of Shenhua Xinjiang.

Peng also announced that Shenhua Xinjiang Coal-based New Materials will be shifted to a subsidiary of Shenhua Group, as it is now an affiliate of the group corporation. It means that all taxes from Shenhua Xinjiang will be 100% kept in Xinjiang, being larger support to the autonomous region and Urumqi, and as an affiliate, 60% of the tax will be delivered to Beijing.

Air Products Signs gas-separation Deal in China
Mar. 3, 2016

Air Products said Thursday one of its divisions has been contracted to build a "large quantity" of gas separators for purifying hydrogen at a facility in north-central China.

In a news release, the Trexlertown industrial gases supplier said its division, which is in St. Louis, will build the separators for Ningdong Energy and Chemical Industry in Ningxia, China, as part of a coal-to-liquids project. The company did not disclose financial terms or how many separators are being built.

Air Products' St. Louis division makes systems that separate gases by passing them through membranes. The membranes are part of a hydrogen purification and recycling operation that is expected to start later this year. Impure hydrogen from coal processing passes through the membrane system, which removes contaminants. It also purifies hydrogen for reuse. Its system separates hydrogen from methane, carbon monoxide and other hydrocarbons.

"This coal-to-liquids project demonstrates China's advanced capabilities in the energy industry, and we are very proud to be part of it," said Peter Fung, business manager of Permea China Ltd., a division of Air Products membranes.

Air Products' World-Class Air Separation Unit Project in Yulin, Western China Fully Onstream
Jan. 28, 2016

Air Products (NYSE: APD), a world-leading industrial gases company, today announced its four air separation unit (ASU) trains built for Shaanxi Future Energy Chemical Co., Ltd. in Yulin City, Shaanxi Province, China, have been brought fully onstream. The project, capable of producing 12,000 tons per day of oxygen and significant tonnage volumes of nitrogen and compressed dry air for the customer's coal chemical plant, represents one of the largest single on-site ASU orders ever committed to an industrial gas company.

"This is a great milestone for Air Products and thanks to Shaanxi Future Energy Chemical for their trust in us to supply the very large industrial gas demand of such a monumental project. The successful execution of this world-scale project is another testimonial of our leading position in large air separation and excellence in safety, reliability and technology," said Phil Sproger, vice president, Asia On-Site Business Development, Industrial Gases. "We will continue to pursue opportunities where we can leverage on our application solutions and expertise to support China's sustainable development under its 13th Five-year Plan."

The industrial gases produced by Air Products' ASUs and supplied to Shaanxi Future Energy Chemical at Yulin are used to help produce one million tons of high quality oil products annually. The four ASU trains are equipped with state-of-the-art air compressors as well as design and technology advancements to enhance energy efficiency and minimize operational costs for the customer.

Established in 2011, Shaanxi Future Energy Chemical is jointly-owned by the state-backed Yankuang Coal Group (50%), Yanzhou Coal Co., Ltd. (25%) and Shaanxi Yanchang Petroleum Group (25%). Its Yulin coal-to-liquid demonstration project has recently been awarded "China's Top 10 Project" for the efforts on innovation and sustainability and setting leading examples for the 13th five-year time period by China Petroleum & Chemical Industrial Federation, a non-profit organization covering over 300 major companies, institutions and associations in China's petrochemical industry; and China Chemical Industry News, the country's leading trade publication.

Dr. Sun Qiwen, general manager of Shaanxi Future Energy Chemical, said, "We are pleased to have partnered with Air Products on this important project and impressed with their technological and safety expertise demonstrated throughout the execution."

Air Products has been operating in China since 1987 and supporting customers to meet their productivity, energy efficiency, and environmental targets with its integrated gases supply, sustainable solutions and expertise. The company has built several world-scale ASU facilities in the country supplying large tonnage quantities of industrial gases to significant energy projects for customers including Weihe Clean Energy Co. and Pucheng Clean Energy Co. in Shaanxi Province. It is building another multi-train ASU project in Shanxi Province to support Shanxi Lu'an Mining Group's coal-to-liquid business.

Outside China, the company is now building the world's largest industrial gas complex, capable of supplying 75,000 metric tons per day (20,000 oxygen and 55,000 nitrogen) to Saudi Aramco's refinery being built in Jazan, Saudi Arabia. Key process equipment is designed by Air Products' engineering and manufacturing team in Shanghai and will be manufactured in China.

China’s New Coal-to-gas Pipeline
Oct. 16, 2016

China has utilised coal-to-gas technology to decrease pollution, and increase the amount of cleaner fuels within large cities. However, environmental groups have stated that the coal-to-gas and/or coal-to-liquid projects will in fact have little effect on reducing pollution and carbon emissions.

In 2014, China’s National Energy Administration had cautioned operators to consider their coal-to-gas projects. Apart from needing regulator approval for these projects, the warning highlighted issues of environmental damage and costly investments.

Sinopec took the National Energy Administration’s considerations of environmental hazards and, as a result, in July 2015 the company was given permission to undertake their coal-to-gas projects though only within regions that have sufficient water resources.

And now, Sinopec – a Chinese energy giant – has stated that China’s National Energy Administration has approved a pipeline, of which will transport synthetic gas from coal-to-gas projects.

The 8400 km pipeline will carry a maximum of 30 billion m3/y from Xinjiang to Guangdong, and will cost over US$20.5 billion. In the future, the pipeline will transport conventional and shale gas, in addition to coal-bed methane.

Coal-to-chemicals Grows in China, Technology Exports Considered
Nov. 16, 2015

China’s use of coal-to-chemicals technology is poised to become a significant part of the country’s feedstock mix, with analysts at a recent industry conference also raising the possibility that the technology could be exported.

The Chinese have successfully converted coal to olefins at a cost of $20 to $25 per ton at facilities in remote coal-rich regions, although questions remain about the environmental impact of the technology and the logistics of getting it cheaply to the finished goods factories along the country’s more developed coast.

At least that was the consensus that emerged from delegates and analysts speaking at the Asia Chemical Conference, sponsored by IHS Chemicals, Nov. 5-6 in Singapore.

China has 10.1 billion pounds of coal-to-olefins plants in operation, 15.3 billion pounds under construction to be completed over the next two years and a further 33.1 billion pounds under planning, according to Paul Pang, vice president of greater China at IHS Chemicals.

He said 40 percent of olefin production in China could come from unconventional feedstocks like methanol, coal and propane dehydrogenation by 2020.

“This is up from 20 percent in 2015, and up from a rate of nearly zero percent of olefins coming from unconventional sources just five years ago,” Pang said.

The Chinese are running their plants at full capacity profitably even though crude oil prices have come down drastically, making hydrocarbon-based feedstocks cheaper, he said.

Pang said he has visited almost all of the Chinese coal conversion plants, saying they were neat and clean, although he acknowledged concerns about carbon dioxide emissions.

He also raised the possibility of China exporting coal-to-olefins technology, a point that other delegates at the conference said could fit in with China’s plans to develop the new Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank as a source of technology exports.

Delegates suggested that coal-rich countries in Asia like Indonesia and some places in Eastern Europe could benefit from the modified Chinese technology.

In that analysis, Beijing sees the technology as helping some weaker economies avoid defaulting on debt payments, indirectly helping manage its monetary issues.

One Western analyst at the conference, speaking anonymously because of the sensitivities of the AIIB, said coal-to-chemicals could be seen as a good way to help countries reduce energy imports.

In an interview at the conference, Pang said Chinese investment in coal conversion to liquid and chemicals could slow down.

In prepared comments for the event, he noted that IHS expects investments in unconventional olefins production to peak this year at more than $20 billion.

Some delegates at the conference also raised questions about the environmental impacts of the coal to olefins technology, including disposing of sludge from CTO facilities, although all spoke off the record, saying it too sensitive to be seen as speaking publicly for their companies.

Successful China Launch of Clariant Pre-sulphided Sour Gas Shift Catalyst
Oct. 12, 2015

Clariant’s new generation ShiftMax 820S SGS catalyst employs a proprietary pre-sulfiding process, which offers many advantages for coal-to-chemical producers. The new catalyst greatly improves working conditions by avoiding the use of flammable and toxic agents, such as carbon disulfide or dimethyl sulfide, during the commissioning phase.

Moreover, it reduces the risk of high temperature excursions and sulfur emissions during plant start-up and production. ShiftMax 820S also optimizes processes as it is typically ready for start-up three times faster than conventional catalysts. Besides saving time, the higher activity of ShiftMax 820S reduces syngas and energy requirements, thus allowing more economical, efficient and simplified operations. ShiftMax 820S is part of an industrially proven catalyst series, which are suitable for all types of coal-to-chemical applications and gasification technologies. The catalyst can be used as a simple drop-in solution without changing any plant equipment.

The launch of ShiftMax 820S demonstrates Clariant’s commitment to offering advanced catalytic solutions for the chemical industry. Another recent introduction is a new SGS process, jointly developed by Clariant and Siemens. Through optimization and simplification of total plant concepts, the new SGS process reduces capital expenditure for the shift system by up to 20%, and optimizes operating costs with up to 30% lower catalyst volume. Futhermore, the technique can handle different steam-to-gas ratios and high carbon monoxide content without adjustment of the feed gas, resulting in improved availability and reliability of the whole process. Thanks to steam-independent control of the exothermal reaction, it is an inherently safe process and there is no risk of temperature run-away reactions. The new SGS process is available for use by all coal gasification companies.

Shanghai Huayi Energy Chemical Co is the principal coal-to-chemical subsidiary of Shanghai Huayi (Group) Company Ltd. It is one of the top three methanol producers in China with an annual production capacity of 1.6 million tons. Clariant’s successful partnership with Shanghai Huayi Energy Chemical Co. Ltd began in 2011 with the delivery of ShiftMax 820 catalysts for an SGS unit. This was followed by catalyst supplies for a second unit in 2012. The catalysts have performed favorably at both units, with a lifetime exceeding 4 years. In 2015, two further units were equipped with Clariant catalysts, this time using the new pre-sulfided ShiftMax 820S. Shanghai Huayi Energy Chemical Co. Ltd is the first producer to use the ShiftMax 820S pre-sulfided Sour Gas Shift catalyst in China, and has confirmed optimal start-up and robust operation at both units.

Meng Qing Jun, Chief Engineer at Shanghai Huayi Energy Chemical Co stated, “Safety is most important during our production. Clariant ShiftMax 820S Sour Gas Shift catalyst not only improves employees’ working environment but also production efficiency with a provision of high value proposition.”

Stefan Heuser, Senior Vice President & General Manager of Business Unit Catalysts at Clariant, added, “The successful launch of ShiftMax 820S was another substantial step in our continued progress in China. We are very pleased to share this achievement with Shanghai Huayi Energy Chemical Co. Ltd. In just four years of partnership, Clariant has succeeded in steadily enhancing its solutions on safety, efficiency and value creation to coal-to-chemical -producers.”

Johnson Matthey to Provide Methanation Technology for Inner Mongolia Coal-to-chemicals Plant
Nov. 12, 2015

Inner Mongolia Lianhe Energy Co. has entered into a contract with Johnson Matthey Process Technologies (JMPT; London, U.K.; for the supply of a methanation technology license, engineering, catalysts and technical services for a major new coal-to-chemicals plant. The plant, to be located in Baotou in Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region in China, will produce liquefied natural gas (LNG) from syngas generated from gasification of coal.

The new plant, expected to be operational in 2017, will use Johnson Matthey’s proprietary CRG methanation process technology. CRG technology converts carbon oxides and hydrogen to methane, which can be exported by pipeline as substitute natural gas (SNG) or liquefied for export by tanker.

Johnson Matthey Process Technologies is proud to continue its support of the Chinese energy industry with this latest project which follows more than a dozen other applications of CRG technology in China in the last few years. The first of these plants are already operational and successfully supplying SNG to Chinese cities such as Beijing.

The Dilemma of Modern Coal Chemical "Fortress Besieged"
Feb. 29, 2016

In the new normal, massive coal chemical projects pull function on the economic development is particularly important. According to the national coal deep processing "much starker choices-and graver consequences-in planning draft, subsequent coal chemical projects will continue to push forward. In 2016-2020, China's coal chemical projects will enter the upgrade demonstration and commercial development, coal, coal to methanol/olefin, coal gas, and other fields will have a large number of projects completed and put into operation.

News from China coal chemical industry, according to the current, on the one hand, some of the coal chemical projects under the multiple pressures, seek for the merger and reorganization, or listing requirements or to transfer; On the other hand, some investors or one thousand ways for the government to be flagging, or apply for eia report, over and over again, to squeeze into the coal chemical industry. At this point in time, now, whether in the "inside" or "outside" think ran in, all need to be more rational.

First of all, in the "inside" never too pessimistic.

In 2015, a year is the worst of the coal chemical industry enterprise. From the market point of view, the international crude oil prices fell, precipice chemical commodities, including chemical products prices. In terms of environmental protection, as the latest creation of the environmental law, environmental pressure on the coal chemical industry is more and more big.

Modern coal chemical industry present situation is obvious, has built project has no escape route. But too pessimistic nor necessary. The domestic economy in the future for a period of time or a L, also in the bottoming process. Even in the extreme cases, some domestic coal chemical projects will still be able to profit or capital preservation, although some coal chemical projects at a loss, but the device running status order.

In terms of national industrial policy, our country has clear during the period of "much starker choices-and graver consequences-in", the modern coal chemical industry will continue to actively carry out demonstration. In just the past 2015 years, the national development and reform commission have approved a number of large modern coal chemical projects, release a positive signal to coal chemical industry. Therefore, too pessimistic don't have to.

Secondly, in the "outside" to squeeze into the enterprise also is impulse.

As the international crude oil prices slid bluff type, support the development of modern coal chemical industry product cost advantage is no longer, large-scale development of coal chemical industry is no longer market logic; Secondly with the increase of coal chemical industry and investment in new projects, project investment estimate phenomenon intensified. In the long run, coal chemical industry project profitability would be reduced, or even losses for a long time, are more likely to delay the regional economic development, increasing the bank bad debts, affecting the health of the whole industry.

Finally, the implementation of the new "environmental law", no doubt increased the barriers to entry coal chemical enterprises. Policies more whole, 2015 environmental governance, objectively to the modern coal chemical industry, such as the pressure. Since 2015, the existing multiple coal chemical projects eia report by the national environmental protection rejection, lead to so many modern coal chemical projects ground to a halt.

All of this, for those who have not yet entered the modern coal chemical industry in the field of enterprise is a wake-up call, it is necessary to do some more observation, more than a few lucid, after being ripe conveniently and is also not late again.

China Coal Mengda 600-thousand-ton Coal-to-olefin Project test Run Reports Success
Apr. 25, 2016

China Coal Mengda New Energy Chemical launched on April 15 a test run for its engineering plastics project, which is to annually produce 1.8 million tons of methonal from 600 thousand tons of olefins. Qualified propene and ethene were produced after merely 24 hours, a great success for the test run.

DMTO, a methanol-to-olefin technique invented by Dalian Institute of Chemical Physics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, was adopted in this project. The successful commissioning of the project will play an important role in facilitating regional economic development, speeding up the implementation of the West China Grand Development Strategy, and diversifying olefin feedstocks.

Converting Coal to Synthetic Natural Gas in China
By Geoffrey Styles, January 22, 2014

In its latest Medium-Term Coal Market Report the International Energy Agency (IEA) forecasts a slowing of coal demand growth but no retreat in its global use. That won’t surprise energy realists, but the item I wasn’t expecting was the reference in the IEA press release to growing efforts in China to convert coal into liquid fuels and especially synthetic natural gas (SNG). It’s not hard to imagine China’s planners viewing SNG as a promising avenue for addressing the severe local air pollution in that country’s major cities, but the resulting increase in CO2 emissions could be substantial. It could also affect the economics of natural gas projects around the Pacific Rim.

Air quality in China’s cities has fallen to levels not seen in developed countries for many decades. There’s even a smartphone app to help residents and visitors avoid the worst exposures. Much of this pollution, in the form of oxides of sulfur and nitrogen and particulate matter, is the result of coal combustion in power plants. Although China is adding wind and solar power capacity at a rapid clip, after years of exporting most of their solar panel output, the scale of the country’s coal use doesn’t lend itself to easy or quick substitution by these renewables.

Natural gas offers a lower-emitting alternative to coal on a larger scale than renewables. Existing coal-fired power plants could be converted to run on gas or replaced with modern combined-cycle gas turbine power plants. Gas-fired power plants emit up to 99% fewer local, or “criteria” pollutants than coal plants, especially those with minimal exhaust scrubbing.

Unfortunately, China doesn’t have enough domestic natural gas to go around. Despite potentially world-class shale gas resources and the rapid growth of coal-bed methane and more conventional gas sources, natural gas supplies only 4% of China’s energy needs. Imported LNG can help fill the gap, but it isn’t cheap. What China has in abundance is coal. Converting some of it to SNG could boost China’s gas supply relatively quickly–perhaps faster than the country’s shale gas infrastructure and expertise can gear up.

SNG is hardly a new idea; the Great Plains Synfuels Plant has been producing it in North Dakota since the 1980s. When that facility was built, natural gas prices were volatile and rising, and greenhouse gas emissions appeared on no one’s radar. The process for making SNG from coal is straightforward, and its primary building block, the gasification unit, is off-the-shelf technology. I worked with this technology briefly in the 1980s, and my former employer, Texaco, licensed dozens of gasification units in China before the technology was eventually purchased by GE. Other vendors offer similar processes.

Gasifying coal adds a layer of complexity, compared to gasifying liquid hydrocarbons but this, too, has been demonstrated in commercial operations. Most of the output of the facilities Texaco sold to China was used to make chemicals, but the chemistry of turning syngas (hydrogen plus carbon monoxide) into pipeline-quality methane is no more challenging.

This effort is already under way in China. Last October Scientific American reported that the first of China’s SNG facilities had started shipping gas to customers, with four more plants in various stages of construction and another five approved earlier this year. The combined capacity of China’s nine identified SNG projects comes to around 3.5 billion cubic feet per day, or a bit more than the entire Barnett Shale near Dallas, Texas produced in 2007 as US shale gas production was ramping up. It’s also just over a quarter of China’s total natural gas consumption in 2012, including imported LNG.

To put that in perspective, if that quantity of SNG were converted to electricity in efficient combined cycle plants their output would be roughly double that of China’s 75,000 MW of installed wind turbines in 2012, when wind generated around 2% of the country’s electricity.

The appeal of converting millions of tons a year of dirty coal into clean-burning natural gas, in facilities located far from China’s population centers, is clear. This strategy even has some similarities to one pursued by southern California’s utilities, which for years imported power from the big coal-fired plants at Four Corners. For that matter, the gasification process has some key advantages over the standard coal power plant technologies in the ease with which criteria pollutants can be addressed. Generating power from coal-based SNG might actually reduce total criteria pollutants, rather than just relocating them.

However, wherever these plants are built they would add around 500 million metric tons per year of CO2, or around 5% of China’s 2012 emissions, a figure that dwarfs even the most pessimistic estimates of the emissions consequences of building the Keystone XL pipeline. That’s because the lifecycle emissions for SNG-generated power have been estimated at seven times those from natural gas, and 36-82% higher than simply burning the coal for power generation.

What could possibly lead China’s government to pursue such an option, in spite of widespread concerns about climate change and China’s own commitments to reduce the emissions intensity of its economy? Having lived in Los Angeles when it was still experiencing frequent first-stage smog alerts and occasional second-stage alerts, I have some sympathy for their problem. China’s air pollution causes even more serious health and economic impacts and has been blamed for over a million premature deaths each year. By comparison the consequences of greenhouse gas emissions are more indirect, remote and uncertain. Any rational system of governance would have to put a higher priority on air pollution at China’s current levels than on CO2 emissions.

It might even turn out to be a reasonable call on emissions, if China’s planners envision carbon capture and sequestration (CCS) becoming economical within the next decade. It’s much easier to capture high-purity, sequestration-ready CO2 from a gasifier than a pulverized coal power plant. (At one time I sold the 99% pure CO2 from the gasifier at what was then Texaco’s Los Angeles refinery to companies that produced food-grade dry ice.) It should also be much easier and cheaper to retrofit a gasifier for CCS than a power plant.

In an internal context the trade-off that China is choosing in converting coal into synthetic natural gas is understandable. However, that perspective is unlikely to be shared by other countries that won’t benefit from the resulting improvement in local air quality and view China’s rising CO2 emissions with alarm. I would be surprised if the emissions from SNG were factored into anyone’s projections, and nine SNG plants could be just the camel’s nose under the tent.

In an environment that the IEA has described as a potential Golden Age of Natural Gas, large-scale production of SNG could also constitute an unexpected wild card for energy markets. When added to China’s shale gas potential, it’s another trend for LNG developers and exporters in North America and elsewhere to monitor closely.

Forecast: China Coal-to-Gas Projects
By Platts, January. 31, 2014

Recent forecasts for Chinese gas output have been bullish, based primarily on the success of production from unconventional gas resources. However, the forecasts of state-owned oil and gas companies' generally fall short of those made by government agencies.


The success or otherwise of unconventional gas in China has major implications for LNG demand and new import pipeline projects.

China hopes to raise its synthetic coal-to-gas output to 50 Bcm a year by 2020, accounting for 12.5% of domestic supply, according to Yang Lei, deputy director of the Department of Oil and Gas at the National Energy Administration, which comes under the umbrella of the powerful National Development and Reform Commission.

The comments echoed those made earlier in January by Wu Xinxiong, NDRC's deputy director as well as head of the NEA, as quoted in the National Business Daily.

Something may have been lost in translation. If 50 Bcm represents 12.5% of domestic supply, it implies that domestic supply will rise to 400 Bcm by 2020, which has generally been the upper boundary of forecasts for total Chinese gas consumption, including imports. It is likely, therefore, that the officials were referring to total Chinese gas supply.

The International Energy Agency's central New Policies Scenario, contained in its World Energy Outlook 2013, forecasts Chinese gas demand rising from 132 Bcm in 2011 to 307 Bcm in 2020. Other forecasts have put China's total 2020 gas demand much higher at between 350-400 Bcm.

The IEA estimates that domestic Chinese gas production will rise from 103 Bcm in 2011 to 178 Bcm in 2020 and to 266 Bcm in 2030.

China's gas supply infrastructure

But again estimates vary widely. According to a recent forecast by the Ministry of Land and Resources, China's natural gas output will more than double to reach 300 Bcm by 2030, split 50:50 between conventional and unconventional resources.

A note of caution with regard to the coal-to-gas estimates was sounded by state-owned China National Petroleum Corp.'s Economics and Technology Research Institute, which said in January that output may fall short of the government's target.

ETRI suggests some 20-30 Bcm of coal-to-gas production by 2020. ETRI said: "Only a few of those coal-to-gas projects approved by the government are likely to come on stream during 2017 to 2018, due to the severe environmental protection problems and lack of pipeline networks."

Nevertheless, even 20 Bcm would still represent a ten-fold expansion from volumes expected this year, making coal-to-gas a substantial component of domestic Chinese gas supply. The MLR says coal-to-gas production is expected to exceed 2 Bcm in 2014.

China's coal-to-gas strategy

The government has been encouraging greater utilization of abundant coal resources stranded in remote areas, such as converting coal to higher value products like natural gas and chemicals, with analysts previously estimating that output of synthetic coal gas will outstrip CBM in the long term.

China already produces significant amounts of coal gas, but the syngas produced is used almost entirely in the chemicals industry.

As of 2012, of total installed capacity, 66 of 69 gasification facilities were directed towards syngas for chemicals production, representing 95% of syngas output by nameplate capacity, according to the Gasification Technologies Council database.

China's push for Synthetic Natural Gas is based on traditional coal mining, with the innovative phase coming in the gasification and methanisation that produces syngas and then upgrades it to SNG.

The advantages include the more efficient extraction of coal's energy value, the potential use of poorer quality coals and the prevention of pollution in densely-populated areas.

Piping SNG produced in Xinjiang or Inner Mongolia to eastern and southern demand centers saves on rail and truck transport of coal to power stations in those areas.

However, any SNG produced is as likely to displace oil products as much as direct coal burn because China expects a rapid increase in city gas consumption over the next decade and is putting the infrastructure in place to facilitate this.

Coal gasification is often portrayed as a 'clean coal' technology, but its main claims in this area are its efficiency and its separation of CO2 pre-combustion, which makes it easier to capture and store CO2.

Without Carbon Capture and Storage, it represents a means of extending coal use rather than lowering its carbon impact. It may produce clean burning gas, but the CO2 is emitted earlier on in the process.

Coal-based SNG production can be seen from two viewpoints. First, as a means for China to exploit more fully its coal resource and thus ultimately to use more coal and emit more CO2.

Second, as a preliminary stage on the road to creating a genuinely low carbon process for the use of coal, which in its initial phase makes some emissions gains through using coal more efficiently.

In the short term, it is likely that by piping SNG to gas consumption centers, China is simply shifting the environmental impact of coal use from densely-populated areas in the south and east to the more sparsely-populated coal-bearing provinces of Xinjiang and Inner Mongolia in the west and north, and displacing oil imports rather than reducing coal use in the power generation sector.

Xinjiang to launch huge coal gasification project
By Xinhua, Oct. 6, 2013

A large coal gasification project will be built in northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, the regional authorities said Sunday.

The demonstration project in Zhundong area, Changji Hui Autonomous Prefecture, will be the country's largest with a designed capacity of 30 billion cubic meters annually, said the region's development and reform commission.

With a total investment of 183 billion yuan (about 29.7 billion U.S. dollars), the project will be jointly built by Sinopec, Huaneng Xinjiang Energy Development Co., Ltd. and some other energy companies in Xinjiang and eastern Zhejiang Province.

The industrial project will need 90 million tonnes of coal annually. It will provide at least 18,000 jobs.

The coal gas will be transported to booming provinces of Zhejiang in east China and Guangdong in the south through pipelines.

The Zhundong area has estimated coal reserves of 390 billion tonnes and proven reserves of 213.6 billion tonnes, the largest coal field in China.

With the development of new technologies, coal gasification is expected to be a key sector in the country's clean energy initiative. Several big coal gasification projects have been approved by the country's top economic planning body so far.

Alfa Laval Wins SEK 100 Million Energy-Efficiency Order in China
June 4, 2014

Alfa Laval – a world leader in heat transfer, centrifugal separation and fluid handling – has won an order to supply compact welded heat exchangers to a coal liquefaction plant in China. The order, booked in the Process Industry segment, has a value of approximately SEK 100 million and delivery is scheduled for 2014.

The heat exchangers will be used in a coal liquefaction plant, where coal is processed into gas and then further into liquid fuels. The compact welded heat exchangers will be used in the process step where syngas is converted into liquid petroleum.

“This order involves one of our biggest welded heat exchanger types and it is a very demanding application. Their ability to reduce energy consumption is key, which enables a very energy-efficient solution,” says Lars Renstr?m, President and CEO of the Alfa Laval Group.

Did you know that… as part of its clean energy strategy, China has launched several coal liquefaction and coal gasification projects in the past three years.

Sembcorp to invest in Chinese coal to diesel project
October 18, 2013

Sembcorp Industries has announced its plans to invest 932 million yuan (S$ 190 million) to develop the first total water management plant to support a coal-to-diesel project in China.

The total water management plant, located in Changzhi city in China’s Shanxi province, will offer the most comprehensive range of water products and solutions of among Sembcorp’s water projects in China. The water management plant will provide up to 57 600 m3/d of industrial and potable water, 81 600 m3/d of demineralised water and 984 000 m3/d of cooling water, and treat up to 24 000 m3/d of high concentration industrial wastewater and 9600 m3/d of high salinity industrial water.

The plant will serve Shanxi Lu’an Group’s coal-to-diesel project in Wangqiao industrial park, under a 15 year service agreement secured by Sembcorp. Under the agreement, Sembcorp will be the first to build, own and operate a total water management plant to provide such solutions to large-scale coal-to-diesel projects in China. Lu’an’s project is the first such project to be approved by China’s relevant authorities and has strong support from the Chinese government as it is part of the national energy strategy.

The main products from the coal-to-diesel facility will be liquefied petroleum gas, naphtha and high quality diesel. The plant is expected to be completed between late 2014 and 2015.

Tang Kin Fei, Sembcorp CEO commented: “We are pleased to bring our expertise in total water management and integrated industrial water solutions to support Shanxi Lu’an Group in their coal-to-diesel facility. Besides serving their water requirements, we also help them protect the environment and conserve water resources”.

“We are honoured to be selected by Shanxi Lu’an Group for this important project as it is testament to our total water management capabilities and the strong reputation that Sembcorp has built in China. This project also gives us our first foothold to tap into the coal-to-chemical sector, which includes coal-to-diesel, coal-to-gas and coal-to-alkene facilities, and we look forward to securing more projects in this sector”, he continued.

By《能源》, June 10, 2014

























从2000年左右,新型煤化工在国内兴起,煤制烯烃、煤制气、煤制油等史无前例的大规模项目等待上马。在中国,煤炭资源丰富的另一面则是煤种复杂性,面对规模巨大的新型煤化工以及愈加复杂的原料,越来越多样的干煤粉气化技术的出现给气化市场带来新的冲击。科林、西门子这些外资企业带着自己的粉煤气化技术瞄准了几乎是世界上唯一的煤气化市场,向中国客户“兜售”好处。 在外资企业激烈争夺中国市场的同时,国内一批自主研发的气化技术也开始出现。其中以中国航天科技集团研发的HT-L技术(航天炉)、中国石化SE 东方炉气化技术(东方炉);华东理工大学开发的对置多喷嘴水煤浆气化技术、清华大学开发的水冷壁水煤浆气化技术等为代表。





  在“十一五”期间,国家发改委批准了大唐克旗40亿立方米/年、大唐阜新40亿立方米/年、庆华伊犁40亿立方米/年和汇能鄂尔多斯(7.38, 0.00, 0.00%)16亿立方米/年四个煤制气示范项目,近一段时间,已经相继开车。














































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