Skip to comments.Nuclear Energy Must Replace Natural Gas in Power Plants
Posted on 08/03/2008 10:54:53 AM PDT by kellynla
FLINT, Mich. -- If ever there were a question about the need for nuclear power, it has certainly been dispelled now with the rising cost of fossil fuels. The high price of oil, natural gas and coal should be a wake-up call to all regions of the country that the era of boundless use of cheap fossil fuels is over -- and that nuclear power will need to play a larger role in supplying electricity to homes, business and industry.
Although natural gas is now the fuel of choice in electricity generation, its price has quadrupled in recent years and supplies are extremely tight. Not too long ago, the expectation of rising imports of liquefied natural gas led many to conclude that more abundant gas supplies and greater use of alternative fuels would end the long run of soaring gas costs.
But the pause in increased gas costs proved temporary.
Natural gas prices are once again rising rapidly -- 93% since last August. Major industries that require large amounts of gas for space heating and as a feedstock in making consumer products are once again in crisis.
So now is the time to point out that one-quarter of the gas supply is wasted on electricity generation. Since 1990, virtually all of the new electric-power capacity in the country has used natural gas, and that has driven up the price of natural gas.
Natural gas is a finite and dwindling commodity. North American production has been at a plateau in recent years. Canada has told the United States not to expect additional shipments of natural gas, because it now requires a larger share of its gas reserves to meet its own domestic needs.
(Excerpt) Read more at fresnobee.com ...
“North American production has been at a plateau in recent years?”
Not according to the EIA,
Is U.S. natural gas production increasing?
“Natural gas production in the Lower 48 States has seen a large upward shift. After 9 years of no net growth through 2006, an upward trend began that generated 3% growth between first-quarter 2006 and first-quarter 2007, followed by an exceptionally large 9% increase between first-quarter 2007 and first-quarter 2008.”
Will Natural Gas Production Continue To Increase in the Lower 48 States?
“Most likely, production will continue to increase for the next few years if demand and prices stay high, though possibly not at the same rate as in 2007. There will be some ups and downs in monthly production. Fluctuations in monthly production are often known to come from hurricanes, winter storms, or new projects. The new Independence Hub project was offline all of May for some repairs which should cause a noticeable dip in production.
Total U.S. proved natural gas reserves resources that have been identified and tested and either have been or will be developed have increased for the last eight years, and in 10 of the last 11 years. Recent drilling trends indicate continued growth, with a stronger concentration on unconventional resources like shales. Shale formations in the lower 48 States are widely distributed, large, and contain huge resources of natural gas. They are just starting their full development. Already, the production from just one Barnett Shale field in Texas contributes more than 6% of production from the lower 48 States, which is more than from the large producing State of Louisiana.”
Nuculer is THE answer to our problems. Not only would it give us nearly unlimited power for our electric grid with ZERO emissions, it can also be used to free hydrogen from water to power our cars.
Don’t get me wrong.
I’m all for nukes; it’s just that I thought the author, Perry was inaccurate about natural gas.
This LNG platform would have been 11 miles from any shoreline (about equidistant between CT and NY). 11 miles means it is barely visible from the shore.
Exactly. Not even mentioned was the recent approval of the new pipeline project for Alaskan natgas to Canada. The bill supporting this is on Gov. Palin’s desk right now.
Or we could go back to using coal.
I propose that anyone opposing the use of coal (or nuclear) to generate electricity be required to generate their own power.
The Alaska gas pipeline is a go from the AK legislature!
That is first piece of good energy news in years. From the North Slope to Fairbanks to Canada and into the existing gas grid.
Now we need to get busy and replace the gas fired EPG with nuclear. It should be national policy with streamlined licensing. Then the freed up gas could be used for vehicles,since we already have a gas grid to supply compressor stations almost everywhere.
Federal Judge Stops Drilling on 3.5 Acres in Michigan to Protect a Bird.
Nuke power may have a prayer when the price of gas-o-leen gets north of $12/gal. It will take incensed, possibly even armed citizens to overcome the hoards of nimby/greenies and their lawyers who will fight nukes tooth and nail.
Last I heard, we have enough coal reserve for 300-400 years...
Back then didn’t they had a lot anti nuke movies like the China Syndrome??
HAHAHA! These governors will no doubt also offer to store the waste in the basements of their state mansions. What a joke. They know nuke power is a nonstarter.
“They know nuke power is a nonstarter?”
says who? you?
FYI: Nuclear plants, offshore drilling gain support
“For the first time since the 1970s, half of Californians support building more nuclear plants in the state”
I'm all in favor of building all the nuke plants we can (including breeder reactors and spent fuel reprocessing), but nuclear is only part of the answer. The critical need NOW is for transportation fuel--not electricity. And neither electricity nor hydrogen is practical for that.
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