All New Technologies Take Time to Develop

Posted by Joe Lucas at 2:47 pm, July 29, 2008

A favorite sound bite from critics of the coal industry is
that CCT and carbon sequestration aren’t viable energy solutions because they
will take too long to develop. When pressed for an alternative, these critics
repeat a mantra of their own: more wind, more solar.

And they’re right. We’re going to need every resource we’ve
got to meet our future energy needs – wind and solar included. But just like
clean coal technology, these renewables also need time for development. As
we’ve discussed here before, we’re a long way from mass implementation of wind
and solar power – there are still some kinks
to work out.

Just this week it was announced that Oregon regulators have approved construction
of a new wind farm
that developers say could be the world’s largest. The only problem? They don’t
know when it will be operational. 

As we said, these things take time.

4 Responses to “All New Technologies Take Time to Develop”

  1. Bradley Smith says:

    Hi Joe,
    I couldn’t disagree more, and I think that you’re insulting your readers’ intelligence.
    Call me a “critic of the coal industry” if you like, but the problem that I see with CCS is that the technology isn’t yet available for commercial projects and wont be for a least the best part of a decade. This is incomparable to solar and wind, which are currently both deployed on commercial scale all over the world.

  2. Jim Millirons says:

    I am fed up with the partisan positions by many Americans. What is wrong with pursuing all avenues of producing sufficient, independent, energy for this country, whether it be solar,wind,nuclear or drilling? Let’s get real!

  3. J B says:

    Coal is the saving grace of this country if people would just listen. Waste coal has been removed in many areas cleaning up many streams, making them viable for fish again, and acres of land. Everyone says “wind” but have a NIMBY attitude? Understand as well the availability of the windmill to produce- what will make up the other 80-85%…Gas powered turbines???? CLEAN coal is here and improving everyday!Read on:
    Windmill Calculations
    An Average Windmill Capacity 2 MWe
    Average Availability 15%
    Annual Generation: (2 MWe * 24 Hours/day* 365 days/year * .15)
    2628 MW/Year
    Windmill Population Density: 8 windmills per linear mile
    Waste Coal Cogeneration
    Capacity: 60 MWe
    Availability: 90% (normally 95 – 98 %)
    Annual Generation: (60 MWe ^ 24 Hours * 365 Days/Year * .90 Availability)
    473040 MW/year
    To replace this coal fired plant, that sits on 34 acres of land, with windmills would require the following:
    473040 MW/year (coal) / 2628 MW/year (wind) = 180 windmills
    at a population density of 8 windmills per mile would require 22.5 miles of windmills to be installed.
    An Average home uses abolut 1000 KWe per month

  4. Bob says:

    I believe the key to America’s energy challenges is BALANCE. Clean coal technology should be pursued, as well as solar, wind, nuclear and natural gas options. As we’ve seen with foreign oil, putting all our eggs in one basket only causes problems. When it comes to energy, eliminating an option is bad policy.