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Environmental Performance of a Solid Waste Monetization Process Applied to a Coal-Fired Power Plant with Semi-Dry Flue Gas Desulfurization

Original scientific paper

Journal of Sustainable Development of Energy, Water and Environment Systems
Volume 7, Issue 3, September 2019, pp 506-520
DOI: https://doi.org/10.13044/j.sdewes.d6.0251
Matheus de Andrade Cruz , Rui de Paula Vieira de Castro, Ofélia de Queiroz Fernandes Araújo, José Luiz de Medeiros
School of Chemistry, Federal University of Rio de Janeiro, Athos da Silveira Ramos Ave. 149, Block E, Ilha do Fundão, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil


Mixing of semi-dry flue gas desulfurization solids and fly-ash from coal-fired power plants results in a solid waste contaminated by calcium sulfite. Therefore, it becomes useless for industry and is often landfilled. To support decision-making on process configurations to monetize this solid residue a gate-to-gate life cycle assessment was performed, considering three scenarios: BASE case – standard 360 MW power plant, CASE I – base plant adopting dry thermal oxidation treatment of spray dryer solids, CASE II ‒ bypass of desulfurization system. Cases I and II allow commercialization of the solid residue as class C fly-ash. Evaluated alternatives were compared based on quantitative potential environmental impacts, using United States Environmental Protection Agency waste reduction algorithm. Based on the results, the BASE case was more aggressive to the environment, due to solid waste production. CASE II increased photochemical oxidation and acidification potentials. CASE I was the more environmentally friendly but demands additional capital and operational expenditure.

Keywords: Calcium sulfite dry oxidation, Coal fired power plant, Life cycle assessment, Semi-dry flue gas desulfurization, Solid waste treatment, Spray dryer absorbers.

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