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What can I choose in the calculator?

The calculator lets you choose the share of energy from Coal in the total electricity production capacity in Switzerland in the selected year (2035 or 2050).

Coal Power



  • Impact
  • Global market
  • Definition
  • Constraints
  • Assumptions
  • Value range
  • References

IMPACT – What are the impacts of the use of energy from Coal?

In Switzerland, increasing the share of Coal Power in the total electricity production capacity will have the following impacts:

Energy system

image No impact on final energy demand.

image Increase total fossil fuel consumption.

image Likely to decreases the share of renewable energy sources in the energy mix as the cost of coal is low.

image Likely to decrease energy independence by promoting coal imports.

Environment & Climate

image Increases global CO2 emissions.

image Likely to increase other harmful emissions such as radiation due to trace compounds in the coal.

image Likely to increase deposited waste of ash from the boiler.

Society & Economy

image Likely to reduce the cost of the energy transition.

image May worsen balance of payments by requiring coal imports.

GLOBAL MARKET – What is the global market for Coal Power?

In 2010, 41% of all the electricity produced globally was from coal plants whereas in Europe, that fraction was 26%.[4] There is currently no coal fired electricity production capacity in Switzerland. [5]


DEFINITION - What is a Coal Power ?

Coal-fired power plants burn coal to generate steam. The steam is then used to drive a steam turbine which in turn drives a generator that generates electricity.

Modern, state-of-the-art coal boilers burn pulverised coal and operate at very high temperatures and pressures to achieve overall efficiencies in the range of 40–45%. Modern coal boilers also have a range of emissions control technologies that limit the emissions of harmful pollutants, such as sulphur and nitrogen oxides and mercury.

CONSTRAINTS - What are the key barriers facing Coal Power deployment?

• The primary constraint on deployment of coal power plants, at least in developed countries, is likely to come from policy. Currently the economics of coal plants are quite favourable but there is political will to phase out this technology as it is very intensive in terms of GHG emissions.


At the present moment there is no coal fired power plant for electricity production in Switzerland, that is the reason why there is no assumption for 2011.

Various technologies are expected to be available for coal power plants in 2035 and 2050: SC (Supercritical), USC (Ultra-supercritical), A-USC (Advanced Ultra-supercritical), IGCC (Integrated gasification combined cycle). The table below represents the assumed penetration for these technologies for 2050. It is considered that no Subcritical power plant would be planned for construction, as the technology is the least efficient and forecasted to be phased-out.

As CCGT plants, coal power plants can also integrate Carbon Capture and Sequestration systems (CCS).

Next tables contain the assumptions that have been introduced in the Coal power plant model of the calculator.

Coal Power Plants capacity share [%] [1]
Type 2035 2050
SC 20 0
USC 60 60
A-USC 20 35
IGCC 0 5
Efficiency [%] [2]
2035 2050
Technology No CCS CCS No CCS CCS
USC50 43 52 45
A-USC52 45 54 49
IGCC54 48 54.5 48.5
Emissions [3]
2035 2050
CO2-eq. emissions [kgCO2-eq./kWhe] SC0.828 - 0.828 -
USC0.751 0.193 0.725 0.193
A-USC0.725 0.194 0.695 0.169
IGCC0.697 0.175 0.686 0.161
Deposited waste [UBP/kWhe] SC6.44 - 6.44 -
USC4.45 9.27 3.93 8.06
A-USC3.93 8.06 3.61 7.05
IGCC5.50 8.50 5.27 7.95
Without CCS With CCS
Specific investment [CHF2010/kWe] SC 2'046 3'403
USC2'261 3'182
A-USC2'400 3'840
IGCC2'369 2'384


MIN Value: 0 GW.

MAX Value:

2035 10GW There is no specification for the value ranges of this technology as it does not depend on any other factor apart from the willingness of the civil/political society to deploy it.


[1]IEA Technology Roadmap: High-Efficiency, Low-Emissions Coal-Fired Power Generation

[2] NEEDS project(2008), Final report on technical data, costs, and life cycle inventories of advanced fossil power generation systems

[3] The NEEDS Life Cycle Inventory Database

[4] International Energy Agency, 2012, World Energy Outlook 2012

[5] OFEN, Statistique globale suisse de l’énergie 2012

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coal_more.txt · Last modified: 2019/10/22 09:17 (external edit)