After years of planning and anticipation (not too mention the acquisition of serious taxpayer subsidies), backers of the Matoon-based FutureGen power plant have lost the support of the U.S. Department of Energy. FutureGen was supposed to be the nation's first commercial-scale coal plant equipped with carbon capture and sequestration (CCS) technology. Now, according to officials in DC, the site will just be used as underground storage for carbon from other plants.
FutureGen's obituary, as it turns out, might have been written by the U.S. Senate. Plants fitted with CCS technology can't compete in a world where there is no price on carbon. And with Republicans poised to gain more seats in Washington this fall, that's not going to happen anytime soon.