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THE Coal Thread pt 3 (merged)

Discussions of conventional and alternative energy production technologies.

Re: THE Coal Thread pt 3 (merged)

Unread postby Tanada » Mon 03 Jun 2013, 12:18:55

Interestingly enough Detroit Edison put a couple hundred of their coal hopper rail car's into storage last fall because they are using less coal now than they were in earlier years. If export demand keeps growing no doubt the cars will be sold off to that shipping market eventually, or transferred to a sister company that is increasing their use of coal. Each car has a storage fee of $2.00 to $4.00 dollars per day depending on who you make the deal with, so at some point it makes more sense to sell a car off than to store it long term.
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Re: THE Coal Thread pt 3 (merged)

Unread postby Keith_McClary » Wed 19 Jun 2013, 17:01:40

Coal Plants are causing Autism, Let’s Sue Them!
... now we have a scientific study that shows what really is causing the autism epidemic: exposure of the mother when she is pregnant to mercury, cadmium, diesel and other toxic elements in the air. In fact, women exposed to these elements are twice as likely to have an autistic child as women in low-pollution areas.
...
Now, you ask, why is there mercury in the air in some parts of the country? Mercury doesn’t just naturally float into the air we breath. It is in the main coming from coal plants.
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Re: THE Coal Thread pt 3 (merged)

Unread postby Graeme » Fri 03 Jan 2014, 17:44:41

US coal production and exports down in Q3: EIA

US coal production totaled 256.7 million st in the third quarter of 2013, up 5.6% from the second quarter but down 0.9% from the year-ago period, according to the Quarterly Coal Report issued Thursday by the US Energy Information Administration.

At the current average run rate for the first three quarters of the year, total US production in 2013 would likely be roughly 993.1 million st, according to an analysis by Platts. That annual amount would be down 2.3% from 2012 production of roughly 1,016 million st.

Among the primary coal-producing basins, production through the first three quarters compared with the same period last year was up 3.3% in the Illinois Basin, up 0.9% in Northern Appalachia, down 1.8% in the Powder River Basin and down 14.9% in Central Appalachia, according to the EIA.

Coal exports in the third quarter totaled 28.6 million st, down 2.9% from the prior quarter and down 9.4% from 2012.

At the current average run rate, US coal exports in 2013 would likely total 119.8 million st, down 4.7% from 2012.

Thermal coal exports totaled 12.7 million st in the third quarter, down 4.8% from the prior quarter while metallurgical coal exports totaled 15.9 million st, down 1.3%, said the EIA.

The average price of thermal coal exports in the third quarter was $76.81/st, up 10.6% from the second quarter. Through the third quarter, the average price for thermal coal exports was $69.76/st, down 9.4% from the year-ago period.


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Re: THE Coal Thread pt 3 (merged)

Unread postby Subjectivist » Fri 03 Jan 2014, 18:04:41

Graeme, are the Australian mines that were flooded out a couple o years ago back in service? As I seem to remember the USA exports to China jumped way up because of t he shortfall of Australian coal exports.
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Re: THE Coal Thread pt 3 (merged)

Unread postby Graeme » Sun 05 Jan 2014, 18:19:39

Yes, delay in production was about a few months. US exports didn't jump sharply in 2011 according to the EIA. China's consumption is expected to slow over the next five years, and peak sometime shortly after 2020.
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Re: THE Coal Thread pt 3 (merged)

Unread postby ROCKMAN » Tue 07 Jan 2014, 10:33:08

Germany does a small bit of reverse green as it moves away from nukes. Even their gains with the alts weren’t enough to prevent expanding coal burning: AP — The share of electricity generated from coal rose in Germany last year as the country seeks to achieve its ambitious aim of switching off all nuclear power plants by 2022. Industry figures published Tuesday show that bituminous coal and lignite together contributed 45.5 percent of Germany's gross energy output in 2013, up from 44 percent the previous year.

Environmentalists criticize the increasing use of coal, saying it is a "dirty" source because of the large amount of carbon dioxide released when it is burned. Heavily subsidized renewable sources such as wind, solar, biomass and hydropower also increased their contribution to 23.4 percent, up from 22.8 percent in 2012. The share of nuclear power dropped to 15.4 percent from 15.8 percent.
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Re: THE Coal Thread pt 3 (merged)

Unread postby Ulenspiegel » Wed 08 Jan 2014, 15:30:12

Rockman,

in 2011 8 GW of nuclear power went off-line, the next nuclaer power plant with around 1.3 GW will go off-line in 2015, therefore, the developement 2012/13 is not a result of the reduction of nuclear power.

Lignite: The new power plants, 20% of the lignite capacity has been replaced 2011/12, work more efficiently, the higher electricity out put comes from less lignite.

Hard coal: Mid-load was traditionally delivered by hard coal power plants in Germany, therefore, with higher NG prices in Germany and neighbour countries the NG plants are switched off and the still available hard coal plants regain their share (coal +10 TWh, NG -8 TWh), this development is completely independent of nuclear power which deliveres pure baseload.

REs: The year 2013 was extremly bad for wind: installed wind power increased by 8% in 2013, this should give 4% more production, we saw 2% less than 2012.

Export: The German electricity export increased by 10 TWh, from 23 TWh in 2013 to 33 TWh in 2013, the output of hardcoal plants was around 8 TWh higher in 2013 than in 2012. Interestingly, the customers are mainly the Netherlands and France. :-)

Domestic demand decreased at the same time by 10 TWh, so the (gross) production was constant due to the higher exports.

As we will see a net loss of coal capacity in the next years and (hopefully) a higher out put for the REs -added capacity should produce 10 TWh more per year- my bet is a redcution of production from coal in the next years.
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Re: THE Coal Thread pt 3 (merged)

Unread postby Graeme » Wed 19 Feb 2014, 20:49:37

Here’s Why 50 Percent More Coal Plants Could Be Retiring Than Experts Previously Thought

The Energy Information Agency just boosted its projection of coal power retirement by 2016 from 40 to 60 gigawatts, according to GreenTech Media.

Back in 2012, EIA initially predicted that 27 gigawatts of coal-fired power would close throughout the country by 2016. At the end of 2013, that prediction increased to 40 gigawatts. The agency’s latest release places the number at 60 gigawatts of retired coal power by 2020 — but with the vast majority of it closing by 2016.

EIA attributes the retirement to three forces: new federal regulations, low demand growth for electricity, and low natural gas prices. The latter may very well prove unsustainable. But even if natural gas prices do rise, coal faces enough natural constraints — beyond the regulatory and natural constraints — that it’s not clear it could expand proportionally.


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Re: THE Coal Thread pt 3 (merged)

Unread postby Graeme » Sat 22 Feb 2014, 18:36:21

Supreme Court to weigh EPA move to regulate greenhouse gases

The Obama administration's drive to regulate greenhouse gases could hit a snag at the Supreme Court next week as industry groups and Republican-led states ask justices to block what they call a "brazen power grab" by the president's environmental regulators.

Amid legislative inaction in a deadlocked Congress, the Environmental Protection Agency adopted regulations in 2011 that require new power plants, factories and other such stationary facilities to limit carbon emissions.

The agency said the rules were justified by a 2007 Supreme Court ruling that held that carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide — seen as the chief culprits behind a warming planet — are air pollutants subject to EPA regulation under the Clean Air Act.

In that decision, four conservative justices dissented, insisting that the law covered only air pollutants that make it hard to breath, such as smog, not those that act to trap solar energy in the atmosphere and contribute to climate change.
Now, the dispute is back for Round 2 in the high court in a legal fight over how far the EPA can go in adapting the 1970s-era antipollution law to the 21st century's gravest environmental problem.



Once again, all eyes will be on Justice Anthony M. Kennedy, who usually holds the deciding vote when the court is split. He joined the 5-4 opinion in 2007 that cleared the way for regulating greenhouse gases. But since then, he has voiced concern for over-regulation by the administration.

Most environmental law experts said they were confident that the greenhouse gas regulations will survive. The justices turned away appeals that asked them to reverse the 2007 ruling or stop the motor vehicle regulations.

"I think the court will uphold the EPA," said Ann Carlson, who teaches environmental law at UCLA. "The statutory language is pretty clear."

Once it is decided that greenhouse gases are harmful air pollutants, the law says EPA has a duty to regulate, she said.


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Re: THE Coal Thread pt 3 (merged)

Unread postby Graeme » Mon 24 Feb 2014, 18:53:23

Supreme court gives qualified support for EPA to set emissions limits

Environmental campaigners drew solace from a supreme court hearing on greenhouse gas controls on Monday that left justices appearing to support the US government’s broad role in setting emissions limits for power stations.

The case, brought by power companies and 13 states including Texas, argued that the Environmental Protection Agency was overstepping its powers by using air quality rules to tackle climate change.

But a majority of court justices who spoke during Monday’s 90 minute oral arguments did not appear willing to re-open a 2007 Massachusetts case upholding the broad power of the EPA, according to experts following the case.


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Re: THE Coal Thread pt 3 (merged)

Unread postby Keith_McClary » Sun 02 Mar 2014, 01:57:30

Mine fire in Australia makes the countryside look like Mount Doom
CANBERRA, Australia — The elderly, young children and pregnant women were advised Friday to evacuate an Australian town that has been shrouded by smoke and ash from a burning coal mine for almost three weeks.

Victoria state Chief Health Officer Rosemary Lester said vulnerable residents were advised to leave the town of Morwell as a precaution because the fire in the nearby Hazelwood Coal Mine is expected to spew smoke for at least 10 more days.

Residents of Morwell, a town of 14,000 in the Latrobe Valley east of Melbourne, have complained of chest ailments and headaches caused by the acrid smoke.

Lester said that health workers had not yet seen serious health effects from the smoke, and that there had not been a sharp increase in ambulance calls or hospital admissions.
I don't know what "Mount Doom" refers to, but check out the pics.
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Re: THE Coal Thread pt 3 (merged)

Unread postby Subjectivist » Sun 02 Mar 2014, 11:03:12

Mount Doom is the volcano in JRR Tolkiens Middle Earth books, pivotal in The Lord Of The Rings trilogy.
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Re: THE Coal Thread pt 3 (merged)

Unread postby ROCKMAN » Sun 02 Mar 2014, 11:39:50

And if the SCOTUS gives the EPA control? The EPA just settled all those lawsuits with Texas: the EPA, whose word is final alla the SCOTUS, has granted Texas, the largest coal burning state, absolute control of it's air quality standards. It's almost as if the EPA knew what would happen and did a preemptive more to take the responsibility off their back before the SCOTUS anointed them.
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Re: THE Coal Thread pt 3 (merged)

Unread postby Graeme » Sun 02 Mar 2014, 16:43:26

Under the U.S. Supreme Court: Climate change fight in the balance

While the public sleeps through an unusually rough winter, the fight against climate change -- or the fight against excessive regulation, depending on the point of view -- is being waged at the U.S. Supreme Court in a landmark case involving greenhouse gases.


The issue in the current case, heard Monday by the justices, is much broader: Does the EPA have the authority under the Clean Air Act to regulate greenhouse gas emissions from "stationary sources" -- such as power plants and factories -- stemming from its power to regulate emissions from new vehicles?

Most media observers declared the court, with its four conservatives and four liberals, appeared fairly evenly divided during argument, with Kennedy once again probably providing the deciding vote.

Though Kennedy kept his cards close to his vest during argument, he was occasionally critical of U.S. Solicitor General Donald Verrilli's argument for the EPA.



The brief argued: "By its plain terms, the Clean Air Act's provisions for preventing the significant deterioration of air quality apply to major stationary emitters of any air pollutant. This [Supreme] Court has twice held, in Massachusetts and Connecticut, that the phrase 'air pollutant' in the act encompasses greenhouse gases, thereby authorizing EPA to regulate emissions of those air pollutants from both motor vehicles and stationary sources. The identical use of this broad language in the PSD ['prevent serious deterioration'] program thus compels its application to major emitters of greenhouse gases.

"The PSD program's substantive requirements reinforce its broad scope. In particular, stationary sources subject to PSD permitting must apply the best available control technology for 'each pollutant subject to regulation' under the act -- language that unambiguously encompasses greenhouse gases."


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Re: THE Coal Thread pt 3 (merged)

Unread postby Graeme » Tue 11 Mar 2014, 18:33:02

Deal of the century: buyout the US coal industry for $50bn

What if Bloomberg, Branson and Grantham came together to buyout the coal industry, close and clean up the mines, retrain workers and accelerate the expansion of renewable energy?

Would you make a one time $50 (£31) investment to save $100-500 each year? Sound good? Add nine zeros to each of those numbers. In other words, invest $50bn once over the next decade, and generate $100-$500bn in benefits every year.

That's the surprisingly low price to buy up and shut down all the private and public coal companies in the US, breaking the centuries-old grip of an obsolete, destructive technology that threatens our present and our future. It's a compelling high-return opportunity available now in the US if some farsighted investors merge purpose and private equity in a new way.

How would it work? The deal would phase out coal companies over 10 years, close and clean up the mines, write down the assets, retrain and re-employ some 87,000 workers, and create job opportunities and prosperity for coal-based communities. If at the same time the US accelerates expansion of renewable energy sources and transmission facilities, this could be accomplished with no interruption to electricity supplies, adding only about a penny or two to each kilowatt-hour on electricity bills.

This one-time transaction would generate multiple benefits. It would eliminate US's largest single source of greenhouse gases: carbon dioxide from coal plants. What's it worth to cut out at least one quarter of US carbon emissions? To assign a dollar value, we'd need to put a price on carbon.



Savvy climate hawks like Michael Bloomberg, Richard Branson, John Doerr, Jeremy Grantham, and Tom Steyer know all about buyouts. These financial superstars could figure out the best way to structure a Coal Buyout Fund – maybe even at a profit. Private equity firms could get management fees for the deals. A crowdsourced component could become the biggest kickstarter ever.

A coal industry buyout could then become the inspiring foundation for a global financial strategy to get us off fossil fuels, head off the worst consequences of climate change, and rewrite our future.


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Re: THE Coal Thread pt 3 (merged)

Unread postby Ulenspiegel » Wed 12 Mar 2014, 13:35:14

And here for Rockman the up-dated numbers for Germany:

http://www.renewablesinternational.net/ ... 537/77464/
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Re: THE Coal Thread pt 3 (merged)

Unread postby ROCKMAN » Wed 12 Mar 2014, 15:33:46

U - Mucho thanks. How credible do you feel this report might be? Sound bites like this can sound more legitimate then they really are. From http://theenergycollective.com/robertwi ... al-burning

Between 2011 and 2015 Germany will open 10.7 GW of new coal fired power stations. This is more new coal capacity than was constructed in the entire two decades after the fall of the Berlin Wall. The expected annual electricity production of these power stations will far exceed that of existing solar panels and will be approximately the same as that of Germany's existing solar panels and wind turbines combined. Solar panels and wind turbines however have expected life spans of no more than 25 years. Coal power plants typically last 50 years or longer. At best you could call the recent developments in Germany's electricity sector contradictory.
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Re: THE Coal Thread pt 3 (merged)

Unread postby Graeme » Wed 12 Mar 2014, 16:17:34

You probably missed this thread.
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Re: THE Coal Thread pt 3 (merged)

Unread postby Ulenspiegel » Thu 13 Mar 2014, 03:52:42

ROCKMAN wrote:U - Mucho thanks. How credible do you feel this report might be? Sound bites like this can sound more legitimate then they really are. From http://theenergycollective.com/robertwi ... al-burning

Between 2011 and 2015 Germany will open 10.7 GW of new coal fired power stations. This is more new coal capacity than was constructed in the entire two decades after the fall of the Berlin Wall. The expected annual electricity production of these power stations will far exceed that of existing solar panels and will be approximately the same as that of Germany's existing solar panels and wind turbines combined. Solar panels and wind turbines however have expected life spans of no more than 25 years. Coal power plants typically last 50 years or longer. At best you could call the recent developments in Germany's electricity sector contradictory.


Rockman,

the secondary data that are published at Reneables International are usually very good and the authors actually reference their high quality sources like Fraunhofer, AG Energybilanzen and other. Some of the authors even write scientific articles. Sometimes I have problems with their interpretation of the data in a political context.
IMHO, the coal power plant data are correct, they were actually published by the Working Group Energy Balances (AG Energiebilkanzen), and the interpretation by Renewables International very likely, too.

According to the Federal Transmission Net Agency, we will see around 7 GW added coal capacity until 2018, at the same time fossil capacity with 6 GW will go offline and some coal power plants have legal problems, they may not start production. The net effect is quite moderate.

These are the official data (March 2014), the utilities have already applied for the shut-down of more fossil capacity, however, the net agency has to approve, not very likely for some capacity in Bavaria. It is consense in both camps, that 2020 the guaranteed (net) power will be lower than the German peak demand.

The second aspect is, that more capacity does not necessarily results in more production, the problem of conventianl power plants already is that FLHs go down, that is the reason new CC NG power plants are moth-balled. The German domestic demand for electricity is quite constant or decreases, the only chance is to export more, however, this requires higher demand in France -cold winters like 2011/12 or 2012/13, not something like 2013/14.
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Re: THE Coal Thread pt 3 (merged)

Unread postby Ulenspiegel » Thu 13 Mar 2014, 04:06:46

One could add the report of the Finnish consultant company Pöyry, ordered by the UK government (April 2013):

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/s ... ermany.pdf

Obviously the authors speak German and used very good available data.

Sections 2.3-2.5 are very good stuff.
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