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Economic Rationale for Safety Investment in Integrated Gasification Combined-Cycle Gas Turbine Membrane Reactor Modules

Author

Listed:
  • Koc, R.
  • Kazantzis, N.K.
  • Nuttall, W.J.
  • Ma, Y.H

Abstract

A detailed Net Present Value (NPV) model has been developed to evaluate the economic viability of an Integrated Gasification Combined Cycle – Membrane Reactor (IGCC-MR) power plant intended to provide an electricity generating and pure H2 (hydrogen) producing technology option with significantly lower air pollutants and CO2 (carbon dioxide) emission levels, where the membrane reactor module design conforms also to basic inherent safety principles. Sources of irreducible uncertainty (market, regulatory and technological) are explicitly recognized, such as the power plant capacity factor, Pd (palladium) price, membrane life-time and CO2 prices (taxes) due to future regulatory action/policies. The effect of the above uncertainty drivers on the project’s/plant’s value is elucidated using a Monte-Carlo simulation technique that enables the propagation of the above uncertain inputs through the NPV-model, and therefore, generate a more realistic distribution of the plant’s value rather than a single-point/estimate that overlooks these uncertainties. The simulation results derived suggest that in the presence of (operational, economic and regulatory) uncertainties, inherently safe membrane reactor technology options integrated into IGCC plants could become economically viable even in the absence of any valuation being placed on human life or quality of life by considering only equipment damage and interruption of business/lost production cost. Comparatively more attractive NPV distribution profiles are obtained when concrete safety risk-reducing measures are taken into account through pre-investment in process safety (equipment) in a pro-active manner, giving further credence to the thesis that process safety investments may result in enhanced economic performance in the presence of irreducible uncertainties.

Suggested Citation

  • Koc, R. & Kazantzis, N.K. & Nuttall, W.J. & Ma, Y.H, 2012. "Economic Rationale for Safety Investment in Integrated Gasification Combined-Cycle Gas Turbine Membrane Reactor Modules," Cambridge Working Papers in Economics 1226, Faculty of Economics, University of Cambridge.
  • Handle: RePEc:cam:camdae:1226
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    Keywords

    Membrane reactors; IGCC; Hydrogen production; Process intensification; Process safety; Process economic analysis; Net Present Value; Uncertainty; Monte Carlo simulation.;

    JEL classification:

    • G11 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Portfolio Choice; Investment Decisions
    • G31 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - Capital Budgeting; Fixed Investment and Inventory Studies
    • G32 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - Financing Policy; Financial Risk and Risk Management; Capital and Ownership Structure; Value of Firms; Goodwill

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