|KOSPO CEO Lee Sang-ho|
The state-run Korea Southern Power Company, or KOSPO, one of the nation’s leading power generators, is carrying out an innovative thermal power project to build the world’s most efficient and greenest coal power plant by 2016.
This is part of KOSPO’s ambitious Samcheok Green Power Plant (Complex) Project, which will increase power generation facilities, including renewable projects, up to 5,000 megawatts by 2020.
“The thermal power plant will generate a total of 2,000 megawatts of electricity by using four 550 megawatt circulating fluidized bed, or CFB, boilers, which will be the world’s biggest capacity,” KOSPO CEO Lee Sang-ho said in a recent interview with The Korea Herald.
Currently, the Lagisza power unit in Poland, using 440-megawatt CFB boilers’ holds the world record.
“The innovative CFB technology has attracted global attention in that it is more environmentally friendly as it emits less greenhouse gases than conventional boilers. More importantly, CFB steam generators can maximize efficiency of coal-powered power plants as they can be run based on cheap, low-grade coal.” Lee added that low-grade coal was about 50 percent cheaper than high grade coal.
The use of cheaper coal is helpful for Korea, which depends on imported coal for power generation.
|An image of Samcheok Green Power Plant Complex under development by KOSPO (KOSPO)|
The KOSPO head continued to explain that the key words surrounding the Samcheok complex project were “efficient,” “renewable” and “recycle.”
“We are aiming to build a global model power plant complex in the coastal city in Gangwon Province, where thermal, renewable and environmentally friendly technologies are integrated,” Lee said.
“The successful completion of the project is critical for KOSPO’s overseas expansion drive.”
Since its establishment in 2011, after being spun off from Korea Electricity Power Corp., KOSPO has grown into a leading energy company domestically, taking 11.3 percent of the nation’s total power generation, and recently launched its overseas expansion vision.
“The company’s main priority is to provide a stable supply of domestic energy, but it will be doing much more than this. Aiming at becoming a global energy giant, we are developing cutting edge power generation technology and increasing investments in green technology,” Lee said.
The company is a market-leader in LNG power generation in Korea. LNG power plants account for 49.3 percent of total power capacity of KOSPO.
“Considering our power plant portfolio, the company is reviewing a plan to introduce shale gas directly without help from Korea Gas Corporation.”
The power company also stands ahead of other five power generation companies under the KEPCO in investment in renewables, in particular, in wind power.
KOSPO has an advanced fuel cost management strategy. It is producing a stable supply of fuel from diversified sources all over the world.
The company sources its fuel from eight overseas countries including Indonesia, Australia, South Africa, Russia, China, the U.S., Canada and Colombia. Of all the fuel supply, 80 percent is through long-term supply contracts and 20 percent spot buying.
“In addition, for diversified and stable procurement of fuel, the company is making efforts on low calorie coals while developing overseas coal mines,” Lee said.
On a consolidated basis, KOSPO revenue marked around 7 trillion won last year, the company said.
By Seo Jee-yeon (email@example.com