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pellets for European power plants

Post in 'The Green Room' started by RustyShackleford, Sep 25, 2013.

  1. pdf27

    pdf27 Member

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    Looking at that report, I think the graphs below are the most illuminating - US coal consumption for electricity use is dropping year on year, with the drop in coal burning following the drop in gas prices.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Things like this take a long time to work their way through the system - generating plant typically runs for 30 or 40 years - but it's clearly starting to happen.

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  2. RustyShackleford

    RustyShackleford Minister of Fire

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    The amazing thing about science is that it is true whether you believe it or not. Oh, what's that I hear ? It's not 100% proven ? Not 100% of scientists agree ? I suppose you also believe there's no direct evidence linking tobacco use with cancer.

    To the moderators, I'd argue that this is NOT politics. The deny'ers I suppose have made it that. But when someone says that a conclusion based on an overwhelming preponderance of scientific evidence is a "hoax", I don't think calling BS on them is political. If someone were arguing that the earth is actually flat, and we told them that they're talking crazy talk, would that be political ? There are probably some folks living in caves in Tora Bora who'd say the earth IS flat - and arguably, it's a political and/or religious belief.
    woodgeek and semipro like this.
  3. webbie

    webbie Seasoned Moderator Staff Member

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    Energy and efficiency are clearly sciences and mechanics. As you state, it doesn't matter much what you believe....

    Wood and biomass are not currently suited to traveling. We've set up systems (pipelines, tankers, etc.) which can carry oil, gas and coal easily at very low costs. Even moving those far is not a good idea in total.

    The USA just become the largest producer of oil and gas in the world, surpassing Russia. I don't know the ins and outs of it, but it would seem to me that less energy and pollution would be produced if most of the domestic energy stayed here - but that one is not a science. That one is political, because it's a world market.

    BB knows a lot about that stuff, having worked for a Major Oil his entire career.

    When it comes to "jobs", the dream would be to have as few people as possible employed in ALL facets of energy production, because that generally means a lower cost of the end product, etc.

    We're not there yet, but my guess is that fewer and fewer people are employed in the energy field per BTU extracted. As with most everything else, the money today is in the software (brains, engineers, techniques, etc.)
  4. peakbagger

    peakbagger Minister of Fire

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    The torrefaction process, proposed but not yet built in Millinocket Maine is regarded as a major step for selling wood like coal.There are a plants in operation but most regard this as one step past R&D and one step away from commercial production. Most of the torrefied wood concepts are generally producing a product called Biocoal or greencoal. The product has a much higher btu content than pellets and is less costly to make on an industrial level. It also does not absorb moisture and therefore can be handled and transported like coal. This reduces the cost to ship. The only reason there is a demand for it for power production is that it is "green" and in theory renewable and therefore sidesteps carbon credits. Unlike pellets, the product can be substituted for coal fairly easily. A big improvement compared to coal is that the 'ash" in the product is far less toxic than in coal which typically contains a lot of heavy metals.

    Ultimately I see torrefied pellets replacing conventional pellets but not for awhile.
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2013
  5. rowerwet

    rowerwet Minister of Fire

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    computer models that still fail to be able to factor in cloud cover etc. are not science.
    My parents built their current house in the 80's, the "science fad then was still to prepare for the coming ice age (the reason for the first earth day)
    I believe the science that has been proven out on the solar cycle driving earths climate.
    Unfortunately for the tax squandering classes, we can't tax ourselves into thinking we can change the rate of fusion in the sun, any more than crippling taxes will change our carbon production enough to "fix" global carbon warming.
    Joful likes this.
  6. EatenByLimestone

    EatenByLimestone Minister of Fire

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    I don't know. With a little more money from us I'm sure they can lobby the sun to change it's ways.
    Joful and rowerwet like this.
  7. rowerwet

    rowerwet Minister of Fire

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    I love the way I hear everything you write in dale's voice!:)
    Wildo and Joful like this.
  8. Joful

    Joful Minister of Fire

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    +1 ;lol
  9. TMonter

    TMonter Minister of Fire

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    The problem is that the science on AGW is far from settled and the current models are fatally flawed and would never pass as science in any other field.

    As for the pellets for Euro power plants, that has been going on for a while now. From an emissions perspective and a common sense perspective it doesn't pan out but the EU regulations and Kyoto are requiring it.
    Last edited: Oct 10, 2013
    rowerwet likes this.
  10. RustyShackleford

    RustyShackleford Minister of Fire

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    Thanks guys.
  11. Joful

    Joful Minister of Fire

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    Dale Gribble: [Spying him crawling through Nancy's bedroom window] I know what you're here for.
    John Redcorn: Dale, this isn't how I wanted you to find out!
    Dale Gribble: Quit screwing around with my mower!
    John Redcorn: You've got to be kidding
    Dale Gribble: I don't kid about my mower, now get inside and start massaging my wife!
    John Redcorn: [to Nancy] He's taking some of the fun out of this
    RustyShackleford likes this.
  12. RustyShackleford

    RustyShackleford Minister of Fire

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  13. pdf27

    pdf27 Member

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    Most of the models will have a variety of parameters in them for cloud cover, insolation and the like. You can then put a wide selection of parameters into the model, say a million plausible combinations, and see what fraction of them give a warming effect. That's one of the reasons they're so confident in the IPCC report - pretty much all the possible explanations have been tried out, and the "CO2 increasing the insulating effect of the atmosphere, leading to future warming of the planet" fits far better than the others.
    woodgeek and Frozen Canuck like this.
  14. BoilerMan

    BoilerMan Minister of Fire

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    This is only a partial truth.
    Coming from a Master Auto Tech, I've sucessfully raised my fuel economy by as much as 20% (on European cars no less) by removing EGR systems which reduce NOx. Also the air/fuel mixture is also limited because catelytic converter meltdown happend under lean condidtions which also increase NOx, all giving better fuel economy, but dirtier tailpipe emissions. Retuning air/fuel maps solves this issue. With tech from 10 years ago, we can have lean-burn during cruising conditions w/o fear or cat metldown, but the is regulated by the EPA as you stated. All of this is quite illegal of course for obvious reasons.

    Think about cars from the 80s, I used to get 40+ MPG with a 4door VW all day long, now we have Hybrids which are shoe-boxes and only marginally better economy with 20times the technology, but are much "cleaner".

    It is certainly true that buring most fuels in a "clean" way will indeed save fuel, as in the biomass feild.

    TS
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2013
    Wildo likes this.
  15. pdf27

    pdf27 Member

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    Almost - lean burning reduces NOx because it effectively dilutes the flame away from the stoichiometric conditions that are normally found, reducing combustion temperatures and hence NOx formation. Catalysts don't work with them because the lean burning cuts down the amount of unburnt fuel in the exhaust gas, meaning that the catalyst doesn't have anything to burn and so will not get up to operating temperature. The decision was taken that catalysts offered better emissions results from an air quality point of view (correctly, IMO), which meant lean-burn engines were a dead end.

    They're also a LOT heavier, as people have got more demanding as to what they want in a car, so they lug more around with them. A VW Golf (Rabbit) from the 1980s weighs 969-1109 kg (US spec). A Prius is 1325 kg - so even if the fuel consumption is the same per mile, you're looking at roughly a 30% improvement at the engine just because it has to work so much harder.

    Sorry, should have been clearer there. I was trying to say that the only way to get CO2 emissions down is to burn less fuel - NOx/SOx/Particulate does indeed cost fuel to get rid of in some circumstances. Power station limestone scrubbers for SOx are a good example - they typically reduce the station efficiency by ~1%, and hence increase fuel consumption by 2-3%.
    woodgeek likes this.
  16. rowerwet

    rowerwet Minister of Fire

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    it is funny how they are havng to increase the hysteria, by making the language more scarry since the facts in the report actally prove what the realists have been warning about... no warming for the last 12+ years.
    If I was a global funded scientist I would cut my losses, declare victory, and look for a real job.
    https://www.cfact.org/2013/09/19/gullible-green-sailors-trapped-in-the-arctic/ it's funny how even many of the salng /boating sites dropped these stories when they turned into a dissaster, instead of hoax, proof...
    Wildo likes this.
  17. BoilerMan

    BoilerMan Minister of Fire

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    We installed two AxmanAndersen coal stoaker boilers at the church I attend. We save $7,000/year over oil. But some now view us as......gasp......planet killers because we burn anthracite. But as I see it, that's how most "in the know" view "religious people"...............planet killers.

    The weight issue was something I am well aware of, however, it also is part of the equation. The numbers are what they are. I'm sure the majority of the extra lbs. is due to safety standards that were simply not there three decades ago. I still think it's absurd that the fuel economy numbers are not at least 50% higher in today's vehicles with current tech. It's as if we advance in one area (powertrain) and retard in another (weight) giving us a wash, and being fine with that.
    I'm not claiming to be a climatologist or a mechanical engineer, simply stating what I've done and observed in the last 30 years in the automotive industry.

    TS
  18. woodgeek

    woodgeek Minister of Fire

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    So, what is your counter argument to folks calling you planet killers?

    How many tons you burning?
  19. RustyShackleford

    RustyShackleford Minister of Fire

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    I give up. We're doomed. (If that's "scarry" language, so be it, this is f*ckin' scary, what's going on, and people like you).
  20. TMonter

    TMonter Minister of Fire

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    Actually lean burning doesn't reduce NOx in many situations, particularly with thermal NOx formation and will in some cases make things worse. Thermal NOx formation is largely driven by excess O2 and combustion temperatures and it depends a lot on how lean you burn, what the fuel is and what the adiabatic flame temperature of the burning fuel is.
    Wildo likes this.
  21. rowerwet

    rowerwet Minister of Fire

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    just imagine how much more the US will produce when the federal gov't supports exploration and production on federal land, a real win for US workers and consumers!
  22. rowerwet

    rowerwet Minister of Fire

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    the war on coal is working, like the senator said he wanted to happen, coal will become to expensive to use as a power source for electricity. plants will be closed, and rates will rise. Nobody could have seen then how NG would suddenly become the best cheap answer to replace it.
  23. blades

    blades Minister of Fire

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    Ng only cheap as a replacement for coal if power plant rebuilt for ng. Just tossing a nozzel in the side of a boiler instead of stoaking with coal doesn't help much on the greene map, except on the storage and transport side.

    Torrification not only of bio products but also of coal has been proven to be of great benefit, but the infrastructure for that is is only in the beginning stages and of course there are added costs for that process. I do not remember the whole article in read on it so can't quote numbers and such or weather it will ultimately prove out on a mass scale.
  24. rowerwet

    rowerwet Minister of Fire

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    all of this causes big costs for electric production and will nail the rate payers where it hurts, Beaurecrats cause expense, activists feel good because they did "something", and we all get hurt.
    Joful likes this.
  25. renewablejohn

    renewablejohn Member

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    We produce torrefied wood commercially but it is for use as a diesel substitute either as charcoal/water slurry or a charcoal/bio-oil/water slurry.

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