HELE facilities can be found in 23 countries across Europe, Asia, the United States, and Australia.
Around the world, there are 49,000 MW of ultra-supercritical (USC) HELE facilities worldwide, comprising 379,000 MW in operation and 110,000 MW under construction.
Supercritical (SC) power plants currently have 541,000 MW in operation with an additional 32,000 MW under construction.
These USC and SC plants account for more than 90% of all new coal capacity being built However the less efficient subcritical technology still accounts for more than half the world’s coal fleet.
Each percentage point gained from raising efficiency can reduce CO2 by 2 percentage points. Combined with control equipment for SOx, NOx, and particulate matter, USC can deliver more power with a much lower environmental impact.
In our joint report with the ASEAN Centre for Energy (ACE) “Clean Coal Technology in ASEAN Balancing Equity, Security & Sustainability”, we found that if investment of US $26 billion was used to upgrade existing subcritical coal power plants with ultra-Supercritical technology this would reduce annual emissions by 60 million tCO₂, the equivalent of removing 31.5 million cars per year.
Whereas if US $26 billion investment was allocated to offshore wind, it would only displace 7 GW of subcritical coal capacity, reducing annual emissions by 35.8 million tCO₂, the equivalent of removing 19 million cars per year.