The Anonymous Widower

Good Riddance To Coal-Fired Power Stations

This article on the BBC is entitled UK’s coal plants to be phased out within 10 years. This is said.

The UK’s remaining coal-fired power stations will be shut by 2025 with their use restricted by 2023, Energy Secretary Amber Rudd has proposed.

Ms Rudd wants more gas-fired stations to be built since relying on “polluting” coal is “perverse”.

Because coal is pure carbon, when it burns, if produces carbon dioxide.

On the other hand, natural gas, is a mixture of hydrogen and methane, which is a compound of one carbon atom and four hydrogen atons.  So when it burns, it produces a lot of the combustion product of hydrogen, which is water.

I think to get the same amount of heat or produce a given amount of electricity, natural gas creates about half the amount of carbon dioxide, than coal does.

There is another advantage of using gas to generate electricity. You can have small power stations generating electricity, where it is needed.

An interesting small gas-powered power station is the Bunhill Energy Centre in Islington, which is used to generate electricity and heat for some of the Council’s buildings. Phase 2 of this project will capture waste heat from the London Underground and a large electricity sub-station, that will be used to heat more buildings.

These cogeneration systems will become more numerous. For instance, if you had say a large detached house in the country, you might use solar panels or a wind turbine, backed by a microCHP system for dark or still days.

We shouldn’t underestimate, the skill of engineers to design electricity combined heat and power systems matched to all the different markets.

There will come a time, where many of us will generate the electricity we need, either by ourselves or perhaps in a local co-operative. We could even sell the surplus back to the grid.

I will not predict what a system will look like, but it will heat your house and provide you with the electricity you need.

The one thing, I will predict that coal will not have any use for the generation of electricity.

November 18, 2015 - Posted by | World | , , , ,

1 Comment »

  1. […] article talks about how the closure of coal-fired power stations and the reduction in size of the steel industry, will bring about fundamental changes to the […]

    Pingback by Rail Freight At A Crossroads « The Anonymous Widower | November 19, 2015 | Reply


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