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Coal (It's Not a Dirty World)

   We need fossil people in Washington and at the state level that are not in the business of demonizing coal… but in the business of finding ways to use one of the most abundant BTU resources in the US and some of the highest-grade coal in the world.  Here are some extremely promising coal technologies that we need to pursue:

  • Rare Earth Element Extraction out of coal and coal ash – Rare Earth Elements are used in most electronic devices, with large quantities of some being used in the clean energy and defense industries. The vast majority of Rare Earth elements come from China. Does anybody else see a national defense issue here?  This Naval officer does.  As my friend Steve Winberg (former Acting Under Secretary of Energy/Assistant Secretary of Energy for Fossil Energy) told me, right here in WV, WVU is doing research on this with the Department of Energy at National Energy Technology Lab in Morgantown.

  • Carbon Capture Utilization and Storage (CCUS) – Which creates clean flu gas, but it contains CO2 – which is a good thing. The CO2 can then be captured, and reinjected into the ground – where it stays – in order to push out more gas.

  • The Department of Energy is also working on other new products using the carbon value – instead of the heating value – of coal, such as: carbon fiber, roofing tiles that are lighter and more flexible than traditional, and substitute decking using coal and waste plastics to make TREX and wallboard.

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