Fairbanks Coal-to-Liquids

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The Fairbanks Economic Development Corporation (FEDC) is proposing a plant that would produce 20,000 to 40,000 barrels of liquid fuel per day from coal and biomass. FEDC is promoting the coal-to-liquids plant as the solution to high energy costs in Fairbanks and interior villages in Alaska, as well as to meet transportation and heating needs across the Fairbanks area. However, while the plant is described as a solution to high energy costs for local citizens, the primary product would be jet fuel. Project advocates are seeking financial backing from the U.S. Air Force, which spent $6 billion on jet fuel in 2007.[1]

The coal-to-liquids facility would require a 500 to 600 megawatt (MW) traditional coal plant to power the facility, with 50 to 100MW to be sold to the local electrical grid.[2]

FEDC has commissioned a $500,000 study of the project. The plant itself is expected to cost several billion dollars, an estimate which does not include carbon capture and storage technology.[1] However, the announcement in early 2010 of $2 billion to study carbon capture and sequestration technology in Alaska may change the economics of this project. [3]

As of November 2009, FEDC had not yet submitted an air permit application for the proposed plant.[4]



  1. 1.0 1.1 "Funding biomass fuels may be a hurdle," Daily News-Miner, July 19, 2008.
  2. "FEDC to study building cheaper-energy facility," FEDC website, May 13, 2008.
  3. Fairbanks Daily News Miner,
  4. "Stopping the Coal Rush", Sierra Club, accessed December 2009. (This is a Sierra Club list of new coal plant proposals.)

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