Utilities Shifting from Coal to Gas as Fuel

Progress Energy Carolinas last winter faced $2 billion in costs to overhaul and install scrubberrs on 11 generators at 4 plants. As gas prices plunged, it found a better alternative: replacing those aging coal plants with 2 gas plants at a cost of $1.5 billion.

"A lot of utilities are coming to a similar conclusion. Over the last year and a half, at least 10 power companies have announced plans to close more than three dozen of their oldest, least efficient coal-burning generators by 2019. A few are being replaced by new, more efficient coal plants, but many more are being replaced by gas-fired plants.

Coal still accounts for about half of the country’s electrical power generation, compared with about a quarter for natural gas, but that ratio has been shifting gradually toward gas over the last decade or so."

Clifford Krauss reports for the New York Times November 29, 2010.


"Let There Be Solar" (The Daily Climate)

Source: NYTimes, 11/30/2010