- -Coal Gasification (DOE.gov)
The United States generates over 50 percent of its electricity from coal plants. The USA is number one in the world in coal reserves.
"A coal gasification power plant, however, typically gets dual duty from the gases it produces. First, the coal gases, cleaned of impurities, are fired in a gas turbine - much like natural gas - to generate one source of electricity. The hot exhaust of the gas turbine is then used to generate steam for a more conventional steam turbine-generator. This dual source of electric power, called a 'combined cycle,' is much more efficient in converting coal's energy into usable electricity. The fuel efficiency of a coal gasification power plant can be boosted to 50 percent or more."
"Higher efficiencies translate into more economical electric power and potential savings for ratepayers. A more efficient plant also uses less fuel to generate power, meaning that less carbon dioxide is produced. In fact, coal gasification power processes under development by the Energy Department could cut the formation of carbon dioxide by 40 percent or more compared to today's conventional coal-burning plant."
"The capability to produce electricity, hydrogen, chemicals, or various combinations while eliminating nearly all air pollutants and potentially greenhouse gas emissions makes coal gasification one of the most promising technologies for the energy plants of tomorrow." 10-05
- A History of Coal Gasification (ZetaTalk.com)
"Coal gasification is a process for converting coal partially or completely to combustible gases. After purification, these gases - carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, hydrogen, methane, and nitrogen - can be used as fuels or as raw materials for chemical or fertilizer manufacture. From the early 19th century until the 1940s almost all fuel gas distributed for residential or commercial use in the United States was produced by the gasification of coal or coke. In the 1940s the growing availability of low-cost natural gas led to its substitution for gases derived from coal. Interest in coal gasification has been renewed, however, with recent predictions that natural gas reserves in the United States will begin to diminish by 1980. At present, except for by-product gas from the manufacture of coke, no coal gasification plants of any appreciable output are in operation in the United States. Many plants, however, are in operation in other countries that have no reserves of natural gas or petroleum." 05-10
- Bush Administration Backs Off of Clean Coal Project (Christian Science Monitor)
"Prospects for nearly emissions-free coal power in the United States have dimmed in the wake of the US Department of Energy's decision to pull the plug on a 'clean coal' demonstration plant called FutureGen, observers say."
"Under the deal, 13 partners – including China, Australia, Britain, and Germany – would have paid 26 percent of the cost with the DOE paying 74 percent. A key part of FuturGen was the potential environmental impact, some environmentalists say because China's coal-fired power plants are among the largest emitters of greenhouse gases." 02-08
- China's Coal-Fired Plants Suggest a Dim Future for All (Christian Science Monitor)
"Fossil-fuel power plants produce about a third of all the heat-trapping man-made carbon dioxide released into the atmosphere. And the 1,300 new coal-fired plants expected to be built over the next quarter-century will pump an extra 145 billion tons out by 2030 - and much more over their 40- to 50-year life spans."
David Hawkins, director of the Natural Resources Defense Council's climate center in Britain, says that "a far better approach would be for the US to lead by example and implement IGCC [integrated gasification combined] widely in the US. Since China pays close attention to power-generation trends, especially in the US, it could follow suit if IGCC were demonstrated in America." 01-07
- Coal Gasification: FutureGen Plant to Open in 2013 (Christian Science Monitor)
"A government-industry alliance announced Tuesday that it would put a $1.76 billion "clean coal" power plant in Mattoon, Ill. By 2013, the plant is expected to start cranking out 275 megawatts of electricity from gasified coal while emitting almost no pollutants and only 10 percent of the carbon dioxide from today's coal-fired plants. The taxpayer-supported project, called FutureGen, joins a global race to develop clean-coal technology." 12-07
- Coal Pyrolysis: Organic Emissions (NIH.gov)
"Four different types of coal have been pyrolyzed in a laminar flow, drop tube furnace in order to establish a relationship between polycyclic aromatic compound (PAC) evolution and mutagenicity. Temperatures of 900K to 1700K and particle residence times up to 0.3 sec were chosen to best simulate conditions of rapid rate pyrolysis in pulverized (44-53 microns) coal combustion." 06-09
- New Chinese Coal Plants Will Make Climate Change Almost Certain (BBC News)
"Coal built China - and fuels its relentless growth today. Eighty per cent of China's electricity comes from coal, and there are plans for 544 new coal-fired power stations to meet an insatiable demand for energy."
"Yet coal is a prime source of carbon dioxide - the global warming gas. If the power plants go ahead, it will be all but impossible to avoid dangerous climate change." 05-06
- New Coal Plants Will Swamp Kyoto Benefits (Christian Science Monitor)
"New greenhouse-gas emissions from China, India, and the US will swamp cuts from the Kyoto treaty." 05-06
- Sequestering CO2 (National Resources Defense Council)
"Coal-fired power plants are the single largest source of man-made CO2, accounting for one quarter to one third of the world's total."
"We now stand at a watershed moment. An entire generation of obsolete coal-fired power plants built in the 1950s and 1960s needs to be replaced, and U.S. utility companies have announced their intention of building more than 100 new coal plants over the next 10 to 15 years. Unless something happens soon to tilt the balance toward more environmentally benign alternatives, nearly all of those power plants will use the old-fashioned, intrinsically dirty technology known as pulverized coal."
"Coal fuels 90 percent of China's electricity demand. That demand is increasing so rapidly that China expects to expand its generating capacity over the next 30 years by 300,000 MW, or almost half of America's current consumption. As matters now stand, nearly all of China's projected new capacity will use standard pulverized coal technology." 12-05