Two Green Leaves

Climate Change from the Affected Generation

Purified Coal? 18 February 2016 | Posted in News

     People argue that it's hard to switch out of something you've done your whole life, which is why more people don't change to renewable ways to generate electricity. But there is a way to turn your coal into cleaner coal before you burn it. There are multiple ways some involving CCS (Carbon Capture and Sequestration), aswell as methods i've never even heard of. So here are a few.

     So like I said it's hard to switch, especially in devoloping countries so for 40 percent of the world they rely on coal. Coal doesn't just produce Carbon Dioxide as a byproduct of burning it, it also releases Soot (Black Carbon), Sulfur Dioxide, Nitrogen Oxide, and other toxic metals such as mercury. If climate deniers say wind turbines kill birds then your forgetting the 7,900,000 dying from coal because of the harmful chemicals I mentioned. Not just birds though, in 1952 the coal burning in London known as "the Great Smog" made the smog so thick that pedestrians couldn't even see their feet. Thousands died from various reasons linked to that, and I can't even imagine driving or riding a bike. 

     They figured out ways to elimit most of the harmful toxins causing diseases and others do this to their coal plants too however it's not illegal not to. The big problem now for coal is it's responsible for 44 percent of global Carbon Dioxide emissions. Now, it sounds like a lot of effort, but to stop burning coal would be hard because it's such an abundant underground resource holding chemical energy from plants fed from the sun living about 300 million years ago. It's so common that it's expected to last until the end of the 21st century or maybe more, and as of 2012 over 1,000 new coal plants have been proposed mostly in China in India which would be over 2,000,000,000,000 dollars spent for the making of. 

    And that is were purifing coal comes in, planned to save more lives, birds, and mainly less C02. First to strip the coal of it's Carbon Dioxide, then store the greenhouse gas somewhere besides above our heads in turn CCS. To take the C02 off the gas we can mix it with a different gas called Monoethanolamine that bonds with the C02 and turns it into a liquid that can easily be stored somewhere else. Another method is taking the C02 off the coal before it even gets burned. By pressuring Oxygen and steam on it turning it into a solid known as Syngas made of Carbon Monoxide, Hydrogen, and some C02 that can turn into more Carbon Monoxide if you zap that with some water vapor. The leftover Hydrogen gas can be turned into more electricity if you have the right equiptment. Another technique exposes coal to pure oxegen which is fairly hard to get but is worth it. This then creates higher consentrations of C02 that can be much more easily contained and banished to in the ground were it should be or in deep waters where it can't harm animal life. 

     This can reduce emissions at a coal powerplant to as much as 90 percent! The only reason more commercial powerplants don't do this is because of the cost because the downside is it's very pricey. A lot of large companies could definatly do this but for some in devoloping countries once again the change is hard. Like Oregon Climate is struggling for, if we can cap or tax coal that is the overall best solution to dealing with this. So, put a price on it! 


two comments

Fred Ackerman-Munson, on 26-04-’16 02:57
Deanna Brady, (URL) on 07-03-’17 18:40

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