Schneider Electric Partners with TerraPraxis to Rapidly Decarbonize Coal Plants to Reach Net-Zero
Boston, MA, USA
- Strategic partnership will accelerate the replacement of coal plants with emissions-free heat sources
- Repurposing existing infrastructure with zero-carbon technologies will save thousands of jobs and minimize costs
BOSTON, MA, November 3, 2022 – Schneider Electric, the leader in the digital transformation of energy management and automation, today announced its Repowering Coal partnership with TerraPraxis, a nonprofit organization that innovates, designs, and accelerates scalable, equitable climate solutions for a livable planet and human prosperity. As a global leader in sustainability, Schneider Electric’s commitment and leadership amid the climate change crisis are highly aligned with TerraPraxis’ goal of enabling coal plant owners and institutional investors to achieve fast, low-cost and repeatable conversion of the world’s coal-fired power plant fleets—the single largest source of global carbon emissions—with emissions-free heat sources.
As of 2022, the world has more than 2 terawatts (TWe) of coal-fired electric power plants. Schneider Electric and TerraPraxis will work together to deliver the latest standardized physical system designs and project applications for coal plant owners and investors to support the rapid decarbonization of the world's coal plants by 2050. This will require hundreds of plants to be repowered with carbon-free energy each year, starting in 2025.
Schneider Electric will leverage its leadership in cutting-edge technology and global manufacturing to deliver proven technologies to accelerate this energy transition and help TerraPraxis pave the way for new, more agile plants that can be built faster and lower customer costs. Through the convergence of energy management, automation systems, and industrial software, the power of AI and cloud computing brings innovations like digital twin technology that can fast-track this transition at speed and scale.
“As part of this pivotal moment to reach net-zero, we’re proud to partner with TerraPraxis to help transition one of the world’s largest sources of carbon (coal) to zero emissions,” said Gary Lawrence, Power and Grid Segment President at Schneider Electric. “As a company deeply invested in this space, we understand the technology and players needed to evoke change, along with the economic and societal impacts of decarbonization. We believe that electrification and digitization are key to accelerate economic growth and provide immediate, sustainable solutions for customers.”
“We are excited to work with leaders like Schneider Electric to make repowering coal plants with a new generation of emission-free heat sources like SMRs (small modular reactors) a mainstream solution to one of the most intractable decarbonization challenges. The current delivery model for new power plants is too risky, too expensive and too slow to achieve the scale and speed of transformation required. Through this partnership with Schneider Electric, we will apply leading-edge digital capability to transform the customer experience, enabling coal plant owners and investors to make confident investment decisions to transform these plants into emissions-free generators for decades to come,” said Eric Ingersoll, Founder and Managing Director of TerraPraxis.
“Our goal is for coal-fired plants to stop burning coal—today the single largest source of global carbon emissions—and continue operation emissions-free for decades to come; saving thousands of jobs and enabling the reuse of existing infrastructure and transmission lines to deliver secure, reliable, and clean energy to millions of people worldwide. This could radically accelerate a clean and equitable energy transition, ensuring continuity for communities reliant on existing power plants for energy, jobs, tax revenue, and continued economic development,” said Kirsty Gogan, Founder and Managing Director of TerraPraxis.
The strategic partnership with Schneider Electric builds upon TerraPraxis’ collaboration with Microsoft to develop and deploy a set of tools to automate the design and regulatory approval needed to decarbonize coal facilities with nuclear power.
At the upcoming 27th UN Conference of the Parties on climate (COP27) in Egypt, TerraPraxis and Microsoft will launch its first digital tool – the ‘EVALUATE’ application. This free app is designed to help every coal plant owner in the world, as well as potential investors, to quickly evaluate the feasibility, cost, and time to repower their coal plant. The target cost for the complete upgrade to emissions-free operation is $2,000/kWe, with a target project duration of less than 5 years.