W.R. Grace & Co. will receive nearly $3 million from the U.S. Department of Energy as part of a nationwide effort to develop cost-effective ways of reducing the carbon pollutants released by coal-fired power plants, the department announced Thursday.

The Columbia company is one of 16 firms chosen to share $41 million in funding over the next three years.

The companies will focus on developing "carbon capture" technologies that remove at least 90 percent of carbon dioxide, the department said in a statement. The firms also will aim to keep related expenditures to no more than a 35 percent increase in the cost of electricity produced at the plants, the department said.

The Obama administration has a goal of developing cost-effective carbon capture programs within 10 years and wants to bring five to 10 projects online by 2016.

andrea.walker@baltsun.com

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