Clean Coal

Re: Clean Coal

PostBy: Richard S. On: Thu May 17, 2012 12:00 am

snuffy wrote:An interesting conundrum regarding using acid gasses as a suspicion for asthma dosen't fly so well when a study concludes that Amish children, most of whom are exposed to more outdoor environmental conditions have very little to no asthmatic symptoms compared to children living more sheltered lives.


...and they will be using either coal or wood for heat too. ;) As I originally said if you want to point the finger at anything point it at Tyvek, Insulation, triple paned windows, the expansion of ductwork for heat/AC and the increased amount of time kids spend indoors.
Richard S.
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Van Wert VA1200
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Re: Clean Coal

PostBy: samhill On: Thu May 17, 2012 7:04 am

Don't forget that all the non-man-made fibers & glues tend to degrade & or emit vapors as they age, it's already been proven with some particle board glues that were used. As Richard stated perhaps with everyone trying to stay in a climate controlled indoors we are actually hurting ourselves. Do schools even have outdoor recesses where they have the kids playing games & getting exercise anymore?
samhill
 
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Re: Ash Disposal?

PostBy: DavidStang On: Thu May 17, 2012 2:07 pm

Pacowy wrote:To anyone who is familiar with the facts that the "paper" purports to address, I think it even goes past cherry-picking, and pretty far into the realm of propaganda and manipulation. As one of numerous examples, the author cites declining employment in mining as if that suggests mining is economically unimportant."


Not what I said. What I tried to argue was that mining has become more efficient, but our miners are no better off. I said "As coal companies closed the mines, the number of miners dropped from 704,793 in 1923 to 88,000 in 2011. Yet production increased during that period, from 564 million short tons to 1,097 million short tons. Today, coal mines are getting more from fewer people. In 1923, the average miner produced 843 tons of coal. In 2011, a miner produced 12,465 tons.xii Coal mines have been systematically improving their machinery, and replacing miners with mining machines. Today, the mining industry employs just 2% of the Appalachian workforce." Coal mining is economically important, but at 2% of the Appalachian workforce, it may not be as economically important as you think.

Pacowy wrote:The paper also find a way to overlook several decades of effort to address environmental and mine safety issues associated with coal use. For example, it's kind of odd to hear gripes about acid rain when stringent SO2 requirements have already pushed the market to employ low-sulfur coal, scrubbers, etc. And I'm not sure why billions have been spent on baghouses, electrostatic precipitators, etc. if they don't materially reduce particulates.


Powerplants have gotten cleaner, but half of newly built plants were built with old technology. Over 386,000 tons of 84 separate hazardous air pollutants spew from over 400 coal-burning power plants in 46 states. There are many ideas for how we might deal with the massive amount of CO2 created by coal-burning power plants, but none of them are implemented on a commercial scale. I'll give credit for improvements in our powerplants. But I object that we have great scrubbing technology that we are not using. If I added millions of dollars of scrubbers to my powerplant, I'd be pretty annoyed to find a competitor building one without such technology.

Pacowy wrote:It would be nice if the paper at least attempted to address the consequences of the reduced reliance on coal it seems to seek. Is it ok to have electricity prices go way up, even though this would be regressive, and have the most adverse effects on the low-income people the paper repeatedly cites? Is it ok to switch to other fossil fuels (oops, still big CO2 emitters) or shall we just shut down the part of the economy (close to half) that relies on coal-fired generation? Or maybe this guy is the last person on earth who believes that windmills and solar are ready to replace baseload coal plants. As the saying goes, "Any mule can kick down a barn; it takes a carpenter to build one."


Actually, I do not think we should shut down anything. Every energy technology has its shortcomings, and any change in the way we do business will mean more expensive electricity. But that does not mean that we should spend our efforts defending the mess we've made. If the coal industry poured their Clean Coal PR investment into actual scrubbers, or actual research and demonstration plants instead, we would be closer to where we need to get.

Meanwhile, much of my complaint was about mountaintop mining. Much could be done there to mitigate the terrible impacts of this -- impacts on the economy, on community health, on the environment. If doing the right thing would mean we paid a little more for electricity, then I think we've not been paying enough. Maybe, if electricity cost a bit more, we wouldn't waste it so casually.

David Stang
[url]http://davidstang.com/?p=89
[/url]
DavidStang
 


Re: Clean Coal

PostBy: DavidStang On: Thu May 17, 2012 2:10 pm

tsb wrote:Check his bio. He is retired. Making
a little extra money flooding the net with
climate change crap.


That's offensive. I am not making any money doing anything. I'm not flooding the net with anything. And I don't have anything at
http://davidstang.com/
on climate change.
DavidStang
 

Re: Clean Coal

PostBy: DavidStang On: Thu May 17, 2012 2:22 pm

It would be too cumbersome to respond to the many points you raise. So just this generalization: We should not argue that because others pollute, we can too. When we see the effects of acid rain on mountain tops in the Pacific Northwest, it is obvious that this acidity is not coming from industries on the U.S. west coast -- it is coming from Asia. In Beijing on a typical day, the sky to the west in yellowish-white, with the pollutants that eventually kill our trees. And south, in India, a million cooking fires fill the sky with more trouble. None of this is good. It is not OK for India to pollute because China does, or China to pollute because India does, or us to pollute because they both do. We won't save the planet, acting alone or acting together. But we should die trying to do the right thing, I think. We know how to build a much cleaner coal-fired power plant than we are now (mostly) building. We can raise the cost of electricity a little bit, and build such cleaner plants. Until then, we shouldn't use the phrase "Clean Coal" to refer to what we do when it really means "coal could be cleaner, with today's technology". And coal mining companies -- and others in the mining industry -- could spend just a teeny bit more restoring the land when they are done, and building economic health in the communities they leave behind. It wouldn't cost as much to do this as it costs to not do it.
DavidStang
 

Re: Clean Coal

PostBy: DavidStang On: Thu May 17, 2012 2:30 pm

saragnac wrote:I love it when they try to use mining safety as a reason against coal. Green energy jobs haven't been around long enough to make the lists but it's easy to figure out that they would rank pretty high on the dangerous spectrum. Most solar panels go on roofs; roofers are usually one of the top 3 dangerous jobs. Huge windmills can't be the safest job out there, especially the ones in the middle of the North Atlantic. I don't think anyone has done this type of study but I'm positive the btu's per coal miner is exponentially higher than the btu's per solar panel/wind mill erector.


I guess yours is a general comment, rather than a response to my piece at http://davidstang.com/?p=89. I said nothing about safety. I know nothing about mine safety other than what I've gotten from sources such as USA Today ("Coal mine operators have paid just 7% of the fines they have received for major health and safety violations in the past three years, a USA TODAY analysis of federal records shows." -- http://usatoday30.usatoday.com/news/nat ... fine_N.htm My guess is the MTM/VF of coal is no more dangerous than other forms of mining.

My piece was not a pitch for green energy. It reflected my annoyance from the slogan "clean coal", when there does not seem to be much clean about it at either at the mine or the powerplant. Almost everything we've broken so far, we can fix. But not by pretending that it is fixed already.

David Stang
http://davidstang.com/?p=89
Last edited by DavidStang on Thu May 17, 2012 3:05 pm, edited 1 time in total.
DavidStang
 

Re: Clean Coal

PostBy: DavidStang On: Thu May 17, 2012 2:36 pm

Wiz wrote:I agree with the mayor, my first thought was it's written to generate (Link Back).... Copying his article and removing link would still give his article to read but would kill the link. ;)


I don't care about a link back. I asked this forum for comments because I knew there were experts here, and I wanted to learn if I mis-stated anything. What I've learned is that some people on this forum don't read. They just write.

I'll not include a link here. Go find it yourself.
DavidStang
 

Re: Clean Coal

PostBy: DavidStang On: Thu May 17, 2012 2:41 pm

lzaharis wrote:... The creation of terraces and tree farms would
permit quick regrowth of timber stocks...


Yes, indeed. I would love to see our coal companies leave such a legacy, or any legacy that improved long-term the local economy and happiness of the local community. It wouldn't cost as much as it would seem, especially if all the costs and benefits are factored in.
DavidStang
 

Re: Clean Coal

PostBy: DavidStang On: Thu May 17, 2012 2:54 pm

EarthWindandFire wrote:Even the scientists disagree about your point(s) as much as they disagree about global warming or clean energy projects. Here is an excellent article from the Center for Environmental Journalism: http://www.cejournal.net/?p=410 I have worked with a nuclear reactor and have no issues with the reactors, just the politicians that run them!


Not sure if you are talking about points in my post on Clean Coal (http://davidstang.com/?p=89) since I did not mention "global" or "warming" once, and did not suggest that some alternate form of energy might be better than coal. The article that you suggest we read is about the radioactivity of coal ash. However, my piece did not mention "radioactivity" or "ash".

But let me point out, since you invite this, that scientists do not disagree that our climate is changing. They do not disagree that a general warming is resulting from the burning of fossil fuels. They agree, in fact, on all the main points. "They agree" means this: 97%-98% of climate scientists agree on these two points. That doesn't mean that the energy industry is unable to find people with PhDs who would dispute these claims. But we hurt ourselves when we pretend that there is no consensus here, and that we can continue with business as usual.
DavidStang
 

Re: Clean Coal

PostBy: DavidStang On: Thu May 17, 2012 3:03 pm

snuffy wrote:An interesting conundrum regarding using acid gasses as a suspicion for asthma dosen't fly so well when a study concludes that Amish children, most of whom are exposed to more outdoor environmental conditions have very little to no asthmatic symptoms compared to children living more sheltered lives.


I'd like to see this study. Can you find the reference?

Meanwhile, what is the point here: that coal-burning power plants are the largest point source of hydrochloric acid in US air, or that acid gas is good for you?

From what I've read, kids living in the country are often healthier than those in the city, and less likely to have asthma, various allergies, etc. The Amish live primarily in rural Pennsylvania, where the air is mighty good.

It is hard for me to imagine that acid gases are good for us.
DavidStang
 

Re: Clean Coal

PostBy: Richard S. On: Thu May 17, 2012 3:34 pm

David aren't going to touch any my points with a ten foot poll are you? That's OK, I seem to have that effect on most people when discussing this subject because I know it very well.

DavidStang wrote:that scientists do not disagree that our climate is changing.


There is only one poll I'm aware of they did about 5 years ago that asked the question something like "Do you think the the globe has warmed significantly?". They sent out invitations to 10K scientists in various fields that would involve climate research, 3K responded which is typical amount. Technical issues, methodology issues and the fact it's subjective question aside something like 85% responded yes. So your fairly close on the first part. With the recent release of Mullers BEST study there isn't really a whole lot of debate about whether the earths temperature has warmed.


They do not disagree that a general warming is resulting from the burning of fossil fuels.


This second part of your statement is completely false.
Richard S.
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Van Wert VA1200
Coal Size/Type: Buckwheat/Anthracite

Re: Clean Coal

PostBy: Richard S. On: Thu May 17, 2012 3:41 pm

DavidStang wrote: And coal mining companies -- and others in the mining industry -- could spend just a teeny bit more restoring the land when they are done, and building economic health in the communities they leave behind. It wouldn't cost as much to do this as it costs to not do it.


They already do, in addition to money they have to set aside for reclamation there is a tax on every ton of coal a mining operation extracts. Those funds are used to reclaim abandoned mines across the nation, it's quite unique to the coal mining industry. I'm not aware of any other industry that has the responsibility of fixing problems they are not directly responsible for.
Richard S.
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Van Wert VA1200
Coal Size/Type: Buckwheat/Anthracite

Re: Clean Coal

PostBy: coalnewbie On: Thu May 17, 2012 4:28 pm

It reflected my annoyance from the slogan "clean coal", when there does not seem to be much clean about it


Psst, there is not a remotely clean form of energy, food production or even living. If you pick your nose there are environmental consequences somewhere. The only way to go is population control which I totally support - 7 billion is too many. The stupid ones should go first and let's start with those with no common sense and then the rest of us can balance real world choices.
coalnewbie
 
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Re: Clean Coal

PostBy: wsherrick On: Thu May 17, 2012 5:17 pm

Richard has shown this individual much more patience and respect than it is possible for me to muster up. They have an anti capitalistic, left wing collectivist adjenda. You don't have to dig very deep to strike their true motivations. Anybody that states that there is a scientific consensus that Humans are warming the Earth is nothing more than a Crack Pot to me. They are not responsive to facts, evidence or reason. They simply need to be utterly discredited and defeated intellectually and at the Ballet Box.
wsherrick
 
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Re: Clean Coal

PostBy: samhill On: Thu May 17, 2012 5:35 pm

We were having a pretty good discussion before & without all the political crap. The point is IMO the coal industry should be responsible for reclaiming the land. There are already strip laws on the books they just change the name to mountaintop removal & have a new set of rules. I've worked a few flyash dumps & they would never be able to bury streams or any sources of ground water, that land is going to be forever ruined & the people now living in many areas are all going to have to go elsewhere, some families have been on that land for generations. As for climate change, there's a what I believe cycle going on it my be hastened by humans my not, the more trees cut down & land changed will take it's toll, I'd be willing to bet it's going to come faster & harder, natures air cleaners are going fast.
samhill
 
Hot Air Coal Stoker Furnace: keystoker 160
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