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E-M:/ Power plant air pollution



    We can't compare power plant emissions with vehicles or manufacturing plants. Factories buy their nice clean electrical energy. Vehicles are burning $1.50 per gallon (right now) specially formulated fuel. Many of those older power plants were designed & built to use "dirty" coal because of "demands" for cheaper power, because of easier accessibility with lower transportation costs, etc. Higher grade coal was becoming harder to get. To reduce air pollution cyclone separators, slurry systems, scrubbers, & electrostatic precipitators were added. (Also higher stacks.)
   Electrical energy in billion KWHr: (Statistical Abstract, 1995) increased from 1392 in 1970 to 2865 in 1993, 205%. Residential consumption increased 212%.
   All organic fuels generate CO2, an Infra-red trapping gas.
   Converting to cleaner fuels only delays the inevitable: The more widespread the conversion to gas becomes the sooner lower quality coal will become the fuel of necessity. Supplies of fossil hydrocarbons, valuable for many uses besides as fuel, are rapidly being depleted. The 1992 Information Please Environmental Almanac printed The British Petroleum Statistical Review of Energy, 1988 estimate of world reserves as about 50 years for natural gas, 40 years for oil, less than 250 for coal. Other sources of information agree closely enough.
    In 1992 the United States consumed 25% of the energy & 26% of the electrical energy used world-wide. (Statistical Abstract of the United States, 1995)
   In deference to the rest of the world & in consideration of coming generations we, as the world's leading user and mis-user of it's resources, upon which the world's economy is really based, had better start now to use less and stop frivolous waste of these valuable & disappearing resources. That will not always be an option.