The CO<sub>2</sub> emissions from the ERCOT coal fleet (a) and total ERCOT electric grid (b) are different for each scenario

<p><strong>Figure 4.</strong> The CO<sub>2</sub> emissions from the ERCOT coal fleet (a) and total ERCOT electric grid (b) are different for each scenario. (a) The emissions from the scenario-specific coal-fired plants are highest for scenarios 3 and 4 that, by definition, include more coal-fired power plants. (b) To conceptualize the quantity of CO<sub>2</sub> captured in each scenario, we show two baseline results for comparison in which no CO<sub>2</sub> is captured. 'Baseline: no emissions penalty, no sales price, no CO<sub>2</sub> capture' compares to scenarios 1 and 3 in which there is no emissions penalty. 'Baseline: $60/tCO<sub>2</sub> emissions penalty with no CO<sub>2</sub> capture' estimates the emissions from ERCOT generators when an emissions penalty exists but no generators have CO<sub>2</sub> capture.</p> <p><strong>Abstract</strong></p> <p>This letter compares several bounding cases for understanding the economic viability of capturing large quantities of anthropogenic CO<sub>2</sub> from coal-fired power generators within the Electric Reliability Council of Texas electric grid and using it for pure CO<sub>2</sub> enhanced oil recovery (EOR) in the onshore coastal region of Texas along the Gulf of Mexico. All captured CO<sub>2</sub> in excess of that needed for EOR is sequestered in saline formations at the same geographic locations as the oil reservoirs but at a different depth. We analyze the extraction of oil from the same set of ten reservoirs within 20- and five-year time frames to describe how the scale of the carbon dioxide capture, utilization, and storage (CCUS) network changes to meet the rate of CO<sub>2</sub> demand for oil recovery. Our analysis shows that there is a negative system-wide net present value (NPV) for all modeled scenarios. The system comes close to breakeven economics when capturing CO<sub>2</sub> from three coal-fired power plants to produce oil via CO<sub>2</sub>-EOR over 20 years and assuming no CO<sub>2</sub> emissions penalty. The NPV drops when we consider a larger network to produce oil more quickly (21 coal-fired generators with CO<sub>2</sub> capture to produce 80% of the oil within five years). Upon applying a CO<sub>2</sub> emissions penalty of 60$2009/tCO<sub>2</sub> to fossil fuel emissions to ensure that coal-fired power plants with CO<sub>2</sub> capture remain in baseload operation, the system economics drop significantly. We show near profitability for the cash flow of the EOR operations only; however, this situation requires relatively cheap electricity prices during operation.</p>