Thursday, May 24, 2007
Coal WILL Be Part of America's Energy Future
Coal produces 50 percent of America's electricity. That percentage will probably not change much in the next 50 years or longer. Our modern life is powered by coal. America's vitality comes from a mix of energy sources and energy should be provided to Americans at reasonable prices. Competition should keep prices competitive.
Clean coal technologies and low-sulfur coal can continue to provide reliable, affordable electricity. State-of-the-art equipment and new treatments can be used by power plants to further reduce emissions. Super critical boilers and Integrated Gasification Combined Cycle (IGCC) technology offer the potential for new coal-fired plants and retrofits to achieve gas-fired emissions with higher efficiency levels.
Coal-Gasification converts coal to natural gas or hydrogen to help feed our energy hungry country. In the United States, natural gas reserves are increasingly difficult to reach and coal is plentiful. Converting coal to gas can help alleviate supply constraints and reduce energy costs. The U.S. Department of Energy’s hydrogen from coal research plan seeks a pilot plant by 2015 and the technology to alleviate transportation, cost and storage barriers to a hydrogen economy. Coal-Liquefaction converts coal into liquid fuels, such as diesel, gasoline, jet fuel and heating oil. America has more proven coal reserves than Saudi Arabia has oil. Maximizing the use of our vast coal supply means less dependence on foreign fuel.