Oakland News – It’s said that some in Oakland have the unbelievably myopic idea that coal is not a key element used in the production of electricity. Hopefully, this Insight Terminal Solutions-sponsored post about the Phil Tagami-and City of Oakland-developed project will help put an end to that view. According to a report by the U.S. Energy Information Administration, coal is the most-used electricity source in 18 of 50 American states, and dominates energy use in the Midwest United States. In fact, coal and natural gas lead all sources and have for our history, and readily available data going back to 2007.
In 2018, coal and natural gas lead all sources with coal specifically at 1,145,962 thousand megawatthours, and in 2019, it was at 966,148 thousand megawatthours. Electricity generators that use fossil fuels continue to be the most common sources of electricity generation in most states. In all but 15 states, coal, natural gas, or petroleum liquids were the most-used electricity generation fuel in 2019.
And, after declining year-to-year since 2010, coal stockpiles have actually increased between 2007 and 2020. This should fly in the face of those who are trying to paint an incorrect picture, where coal is not used, and renewable energy is king. It’s not.
Coal provides many jobs. Unlike nuclear, natural gas, oil, and hydroelectric energy, coal provides many jobs in removing it from the earth, transporting it to the utility (via the Oakland Bulk and Oversized Terminal in the Insight Terminal Solutions case), burning it, and properly disposing of coal ash. Coal is American made. Coal does not have to be imported into America. The main focus should be the handing of coal in such a way as to reduce emissions, not remove jobs.
Moreover, in a pandemic, the eye of concern has to shift toward the maintenance of our current power grid, especially amid reports that a number energy organizations, in all sectors, are not performing well. With coal responsible for so much of energy production, keeping the facilities operating should be a major priority. Otherwise, whole cities and towns could go dark.
Coal is the largest producer of energy in Colorado, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, Kansas, Michigan, Indiana, Ohio, Utah, Montana, Wyoming, Kentucky, West Virginia, Minnesota, Idaho, Missouri, and Idaho. And even though that list has lost three states (Arizona, Georgia, and Arkansas and all to natural gas) since 2007, coal is still the dominant energy provider in the midwest.
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