Two of the world’s largest energy companies, British Petroleum (BP) of the United Kingdom and General Electric (GE) of the United States, have announced a collaborative venture to develop a unique, environmentally friendly form of hydrogen power generation on both continents.

The projects incorporate a process known as carbon capture and sequestration to maximize the power-generating capacity of fossil fuels while minimizing the resulting air pollution. The projects convert a fossil fuel into hydrogen and carbon dioxide through gasification. The hydrogen-rich gas is used as the fuel to generate electric power.

The carbon dioxide is captured, transported and stored safely and permanently in deep geological formations such as oil and gas fields. The sequestered carbon dioxide is used to extract oil from fields, which would otherwise not be accessible. The projects will capture and store approximately 90 percent of the carbon dioxide that would otherwise be emitted in the power-generation process.

BP has already announced plans for two such hydrogen power projects with carbon capture and sequestration on both sides of the Atlantic. Both projects will use GE Technology. At Peterhead, Scotland, BP plans to build a 475-megawatt (MW) hydrogen fired power plant based on natural gas. The second project is a 500 MW hydrogen power plant in Carson, Calif. The two companies also have plans for 10 to 15 similar projects over the next decade.