Pacific Mountain Energy Center

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{{#badges: CoalSwarm}} Energy Northwest, a joint operating agency of 20 Washington public power organizations, proposed an integrated gasification combined cycle (IGCC) plant at the Port of Kalama in Washington. The plant was planned to consist of a 340 megawatt (MW) IGCC plant owned by public power interests and a larger one owned by private utilities. The plant was designed to burn 70 percent petroleum coke and 30 percent coal, and was designed to make space for a CO2 capture unit; however, Energy Northwest has admitted that the technology for carbon capture and storage is not yet feasible. Instead of capturing its CO2, Energy Northwest planned on purchasing CO2 credits to offset the plant’s emissions. In May 2007, the draft Environmental Impact Statement was issued. On May 3, 2007, Gov. Gregoire signed a state bill enforcing the regulation of greenhouse gas emissions.[1]

Energy Northwest submitted a license application to the state’s Energy Facility Site Evaluation Council (EFSEC) on Aug. 9, 2006; on Sept. 13, the Sierra Club, Northwest Energy Coalition, and the Washington Environmental Council filed a petition with the EFSEC against the project. [2] On Nov. 27, 2007, the EFSEC board, siding with environmental groups, voted unanimously to reject Energy Northwest’s plan for CO2 sequestration, arguing that the company’s sequestration “is a plan to make a plan” and “fails to meet the minimum requirements of the law” that the state had passed in May.[3] On Dec. 23, Energy Northwest stated that it would probably build a natural gas plant at the site. [4]

In September, 2008, Energy Northwest announced that it no longer plans to build the 680 MW Pacific Mountain Energy Center Integrated Gasification Combined Cycle (IGCC) power plant at the Port of Kalama in Washington because of concerns over implementing carbon capture and storage (CCS) in that state.[5]

Project Details

Sponsor: Energy Northwest
Location: Kalama, Washington
Capacity: 600 megawatts (MW)
Type: integrated gasification combined cycle (IGCC)
Projected in Service: 2012
Status: Rejected by state siting council


Citizen Groups



  1. Kalama coal plant, Northwest Energy Coalition fact sheet, undated, accessed December 2007.
  2. "Stopping the Coal Rush", Sierra Club, accessed December 2007.
  3. Erik Robinson, “State Rejects Proposal for Coal Plant in Kalama,” Clark County Columbian, November 28, 2007.
  4. Erik Robinson, “Power Plant Plant to Drop New Coal Technology,” Vancouver Columbian, December 23, 2007.
  5. Maqx Zygmont, "Energy Northwest Walks Away From Pacific Mountain Energy Center" Climate Change and Carbon Management Blog, 9/23/08

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