Possibilities and disadvantages of Bromide addition to reduce mercury emissions at coal-fired power stations

Project Number 357

In the VGB working group on mercury information is gathered to support the European power plant operators in the frame of different regulations, like the European Mercury Strategy and the review of the BREF LCP. One important aspect discussed is the addition of bromide to the fuel in order to reduce the emission of mercury to the air. Bromide addition is one of the emerging techniques for (additional) capture of mercury from flue gas of coal fired power plants. The commercially available method is based on additional oxidation by bromine of elemental mercury to oxidised mercury, which can be captured in flue gas cleaning devices (ESP, FGD) to a greater extent. It is promoted from different European governments and NGOs as BAT.

Being involved in this discussion, the VGB Working Panel “Chemistry of Flue Gas Cleaning Plants” wants to have an overview about latest knowledge about the consequences of using such technology.
Therefore, it is proposed to perform a study which will put the benefits of Bromide addition with regard to reduced Hg-emission to the air in perspective. Aspects that will be studied include the principle of the method and experiences, potential additional mercury removal, effects on the environ-ment (emissions to air and water of possibly other formed components), effects on by-product quality, costs and cost-effectiveness, corrosion and occupational health.
The study will be based on latest information in literature as well as on knowledge and experience available at KEMA based on extensive research.

The project is supported by the VGB Working Panel “Chemistry of Flue Gas Cleaning Plants” and supervised by the VGB-Working Group on mercury.