Positive outlook for air pollution control

Currently, there are over 2500 coal-fired boilers which are slated to be equipped with additional air pollution control equipment in the next eight years. Of these, 80% will be retrofit projects and 20% will be associated with new boilers. While 40% of the retrofit projects will take place in the US, only 5% of the new boiler projects will be US-based. 

A large number of projects are being driven by the proposed new air toxic rules in the US, where 300 new fabric filters will be needed for the capture of mercury and fine particulates, McIlvaine says. However, new coal-fired boilers in Asia will also account for a big share of the cost of the total projects. New equipment that will need to be installed includes fabric filters, scrubbers and electrostatic precipitators – a number of older precipitators will be upgraded to improve performance. New plants in Asia will mostly be equipped with electrostatic precipitators.

A variety of chemical injection systems are also likely to be installed, with lime injection used to boost hydrogen chloride and SO2 capture in various plants internationally, and activated carbon injected primarily in the US for mercury removal.

Chinese power plants located in the major urban zones are being required to install selective catalytic reduction systems (SCR), and US power plants will also install additional 300 SCR systems.