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Removing coal fired electric plants

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Removing coal fired electric plants

Unread postby ProudFossil » Fri 11 Feb 2011, 20:47:17

How will the following statement by Steven Chu affect Peak Oil?

Now White House Energy Secretary Steven Chu has made it clear that “massive” amounts of coal-fired plants in the United States will be closed down over the next five to eight years.

Are we facing real "let the bastards freeze in the dark" possibilities?
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Re: Removing coal fired electric plants

Unread postby Tanada » Fri 11 Feb 2011, 21:05:15

It all depends on the definition of 'Massive'. A large number of older smaller plants are going to be decommissioned because they do not meet air quality standards and they would cost more to upgrade than the value of their electric output would ever pay for. Cheaper for the Utility companies to close 10 old small plants and build 1 new efficient low pollution producing plant that produces more power with less labor than the 10 old ones generated.
I should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, design a building, write, balance accounts, build a wall, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, pitch manure, program a computer, cook, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.
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Re: Removing coal fired electric plants

Unread postby ProudFossil » Fri 11 Feb 2011, 21:16:22

Tanada wrote:It all depends on the definition of 'Massive'. A large number of older smaller plants are going to be decommissioned because they do not meet air quality standards and they would cost more to upgrade than the value of their electric output would ever pay for. Cheaper for the Utility companies to close 10 old small plants and build 1 new efficient low pollution producing plant that produces more power with less labor than the 10 old ones generated.

Since I live in New Mexico which just had over 30,000 homes without heat for up to a week because of the loss of the electric grid in Texas, this is a very salient point for discussion. As you say, replacing ten old plants with one new, modern plant is probably the best scenario. However the EPA and the federal government is not allowing any new ones to be built. So the question of 'massive' becomes one of are all the plants, both old and new, going to be outlawed. If so what recourse or replacement will we have?
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Re: Removing coal fired electric plants

Unread postby vtsnowedin » Fri 11 Feb 2011, 23:09:06

:) But.. but.... But!!! I though we had plenty of cheap clean electricity to charge all those Chevy Volts that are going to save us from peak oil and global warming at the same time.
If they shut down a plant before they put it's replacement on line and you have a Volt not only will the lights go out in your house but you won't be able to drive to the store to get flashlight batteries or fuel for the generator. Sounds like a half baked plan to me.
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Re: Removing coal fired electric plants

Unread postby Plantagenet » Fri 11 Feb 2011, 23:35:13

ProudFossil wrote:Since I live in New Mexico which just had over 30,000 homes without heat for up to a week because of the loss of the electric grid in Texas, this is a very salient point for discussion. As you say, replacing ten old plants with one new, modern plant is probably the best scenario. However the EPA and the federal government is not allowing any new ones to be built......


So now you want electricity and heat, do you? And I suppose you'll be wanting food and a job too?

We’re leaving behind a sovereign, stable and self-reliant Iraq
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Re: Removing coal fired electric plants

Unread postby Ludi » Sat 12 Feb 2011, 11:47:09

ProudFossil wrote:Now White House Energy Secretary Steven Chu has made it clear that “massive” amounts of coal-fired plants in the United States will be closed down over the next five to eight years.


My Bold Prediction is that will not happen. Some plants might not be built (like those stopped in TX) but "massive" numbers will not be closed down.

In my not humble opinion. :)
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Re: Removing coal fired electric plants

Unread postby GASMON » Sat 12 Feb 2011, 13:04:18

Meanwhile, China is commisioning one (perhaps two - see link) new coal fired power station - EVERY WEEK !!

http://www.wired.com/wiredscience/2008/ ... -2030-co2/

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Re: Removing coal fired electric plants

Unread postby Plantagenet » Sat 12 Feb 2011, 14:10:06

The Chinese are concerned with developing their country so people have electricity and heat and jobs and stuff like that.

You can't expect the Obama administration to have those same priorities.
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Re: Removing coal fired electric plants

Unread postby Frank » Mon 21 Feb 2011, 23:07:12

I didn't know it was the federal government's job to build power plants Plant - did I miss something??

Since when did the EPA stop the building of power plants? Any data to back up your assertions ProudFossil? There were issues because of gas shortages....
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Re: Removing coal fired electric plants

Unread postby Puchica » Tue 22 Feb 2011, 06:12:43

All I know is that here in the Anthracite region of PA old mines are reopening; such as the pit mine behind my house. A nearby fire company was just evicted (St. Clair, PA) from its firehouse because the coal company wanted the coal underneath (and won the court battle over mineral rights). This is high quality, low sulphur coal, here, the cleanest burning and highest cost coal. Somebody is ramping up coal purchases to make these long abandoned mines suddenly profitable again. I'll ask the coal company guys this week if they're selling domestically or if the stuff is going on the international market.
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Re: Removing coal fired electric plants

Unread postby aahala2 » Tue 22 Feb 2011, 10:42:16

ProudFossil wrote:How will the following statement by Steven Chu affect Peak Oil?

Now White House Energy Secretary Steven Chu has made it clear that “massive” amounts of coal-fired plants in the United States will be closed down over the next five to eight years.

Are we facing real "let the bastards freeze in the dark" possibilities?


There's about as much connection between oil consumption and
the use of coal-fired plants in US as my gasoline consumption and the unrest in the middle East. 90% or more of coal is used for electricity but less than 1% of electrical production comes from
oil. And useage and capacity of turning oil to electricity has been
in a downward direction for many years, and especially since
the oil price surge a few years ago.
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Re: Removing coal fired electric plants

Unread postby scas » Tue 22 Feb 2011, 17:26:24

Steven Chu is well informed with the climate crisis. They must have finally taken Jim Hansen's urgent recommendations to get off coal. I'm glad they've decided to positive steps 26 years after Kyoto.
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Re: Removing coal fired electric plants

Unread postby cephalotus » Tue 22 Feb 2011, 18:38:50

Plantagenet wrote:The Chinese are concerned with developing their country so people have electricity and heat and jobs and stuff like that.


Europe's "net electricity generation capacity" from coal plants decreased by 9,5 GW from 2000 to 2010.
Natural gas and renewables on the other side rose significantly and are easily replacing coal and oil power plants.

http://ewea.org/fileadmin/ewea_document ... s_2010.pdf (page 8 )
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Re: Removing coal fired electric plants

Unread postby Tanada » Sun 29 Jan 2012, 07:54:57

Consumers Power of Michigan announced in December that at least two of their medium size plants are closing due to EPA regulations in Erie and Kalamazoo Michigan. Both site have old plants that would need to be basically rebuilt from scratch top meet the new regulations. No new plants are currently projected, I think they are waiting until after the upcoming election to decide what kind of replacements to build.
I should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, design a building, write, balance accounts, build a wall, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, pitch manure, program a computer, cook, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.
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Re: Removing coal fired electric plants

Unread postby Cog » Sun 29 Jan 2012, 08:17:47

Building the next generation of nuclear power plants would be an excellent idea at this point.
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Re: Removing coal fired electric plants

Unread postby Cloud9 » Sun 29 Jan 2012, 09:48:02

It is the nature of the mind to see patterns where there are none, but if I did not know better, I would conclude that someone is intentionally trying to push us towards insurrection. When the lights go out government ceases to function.

Social order can be maintained for a couple of weeks if the populace believes the lights will come back on. We maintained social order during the 04 hurricanes primarily because the body politic could see the legions of line crews working twenty four seven to get the grid back up. Some people did not get electricity for a month.

Shut down the coal fired plants without a replacement and the areas that depend on them for electricity will become dead zones in short order.

Rational people understand this. The true believers at the EPA do not.
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