Navajo Electric Coal Plant goes dark

  • Active since 1995, is THE place on the internet for free information and advice about wood stoves, pellet stoves and other energy saving equipment.

    We strive to provide opinions, articles, discussions and history related to Hearth Products and in a more general sense, energy issues.

    We promote the EFFICIENT, RESPONSIBLE, CLEAN and SAFE use of all fuels, whether renewable or fossil.


Minister of Fire
Hearth Supporter
Jul 11, 2008
Northern NH

Another sign that coal fire power plants are not long for the US. Its interesting that some large financial firms are no longer actively lending for large natural gas fired plants as they are predicting that they will become stranded assets. The prediction is that global warming legislation will make renewables and storage the least cost new power. The DOE commissioned a major study about building major HVDC transmission lines across the country for moving surplus renewables around the country but the current administration will not release it

Putting in the supergrid along with a expected boom in east coast offshore wind (also being held up by the current administration . Add in a major increase in storage and that's most likely where the US will get its power in the 20 year lifespan of large new fossil projects.

About 10 years ago I did my small part converting a coal plant over to biomass. Sadly the state it was in decided Duke Energy needed a subsidy to burn gas instead of coal and shut it down by pulling incentives from renewable generation.
They just shut down the Bridgeport CT coal fired plant a few months ago as well. A new natural gas plant was built next to it.

On a somewhat related side note I noticed alot of vegetables I have bought are being grown in Canada in hydroponic greenhouse. Apparently there is soo much cheap hydro power that its feasible. They do this in Iceland as well with the cheap geothermal power.
There is a commercial greenhouse going in near me located next to a large fairly new biomass power plant in Berlin NH. The plant will send them waste heat to keep the greenhouse warm. My guess is it may start with vegetables but as soon as pot is legal in NH it will switch to pot.

Greenhouse's use a lot of power and usually they locate them near cheap natural gas. They run natural gas generators to generate the power and then take the waste heat to heat the building. They also blend the exhaust into the building air to bump up the CO2 concentration in the air. Here is link to a 42 acre tomato farm in Madison Maine that supplied a lot of the fresh tomatoes in New England

I have worked on several biomass power plants and the dream at many is to have greenhouse located nearby to use the waste heat. It rarely happens.
Pennsylvania’s 2.7-GW Bruce Mansfield unit just shut down too.
Alberta will also be coal free by 2030. The sad part is many of these old sub 40% efficient plants are being converted to natural gas when 60%+ efficient combined cycle plants can be built.
HVDC is a nice way to move power across the country as the western grid, the Texas Ercot grid and eastern grid are not necessarily synchronized for frequency. With HVDC no need to worry as its converted over at the converter stations located at the respective grids. I also think when it gets to very high currents that HVDC puts out much lower RFI. When I have hiked past the HVDC lines along the NH and VT border I don't notice the "buzz" in the air but do notice it when hiking near large AC lines.

At one point the concept was to make the conductors out of high temp superconductors and cool the conductors with CO2. The CO2 would be captured from various operations in the urban area that need a lot of power and pumped out to more rural area with soils conditions more conducive to permanent CO2 storage. Pumping all that power around does mean resistance and wasted power so superconductors with effectively no resistance would reduce that wasted power.
I've seen a ton of solar farms popping up all over the place.

I've often wondered of sheep or some other herbivore could graze in between them and lower maintenance more.