Wednesday, April 01, 2009

Lessons not learned?

Dubious long-term decision-making does not appear to be restricted to the UK and US.

Adu Dhabi is has announced that it will change to coal-fired electricity generation. Dubai is currently building four such plants, with combined output of 4 gigawatts - enough to power 400,000 typical American homes. Oman is contracting with South Korea to build several as well, and Egypt proposes to build at least one on the shores of the Red Sea.

The supposed incentive is that coal from Australia is cheaper than their own natural gas. One wonders why they aren't using the desert for solar power. Perhaps it isn't the panacea that we have been told it is?

China, of course, puts one plant on their grid every 10 days, but at least they have their own mines.

Haven't the Arab nations learned the danger of energy dependence?


dearieme said...

Natural Gas is mainly CH4. Coal is approximately C. Add equal (molar) amounts together and you get C2H4 which is not far from the composition ratio of petrol. But I've never seen any chemical process designed make petrol by combining the two. There are, however, processes for (separately) making petrol from coal and from natural gas. How odd.

Sackerson said...

Very interesting, DM. Any chemists out there willing to take this notion further - is that combination what the Arabs are trying to do, do you think?