Why would you do this ?

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'Stralia
Had an American Senior engineer from a very innovative company who supply non OEM spares to the power industry world wide. He stated that he's amazed when he comes to Australia, as we put the power stations where the coal is, while the US it's not uncommon for a station to be situated such that the coal has to be transported by rail for over 1,000 miles. Given that a 1,000MW needs around 10,000 tonnes of coal each and every day that it runs, why on Earth would you intentionally build a power station so far from the coal ? I can think of a few, but in each case they don't make a huge amount of sense: - Job creation...lots of jobs in moving megatonnes around the place. - Lobbying for putting a power station in a particular location...but nobody wants them. - An excuse to build a greater than necessary rail system to move large volumes of stuff in times of crisis. - putting them where the water is...but new dry stations are going up in Oz as we speak. Why ?
 
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Vermont
Maybe the coal is not near the population centers where a large percentage of the power is consumed. That basically leaves two options: 1- Build power stations as close to the point of consumption and transport the coal. 2- Build the power stations near the coal source and build power lines to transport the power to population centers.
 

Shannow

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'Stralia
Transmission, particulalry on the US grid is WAY easier than shifting coal. Think for a 1,000MW, you need 400 semis per day.
 

Shannow

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'Stralia
 Originally Posted By: chevrofreak
What is more cost effective, transporting the coal, or power transmission losses?
Generation losses around 60 percent. Transmission losses <10 percent.
 
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35,963
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ME
Our environmental laws mean new coal fired plants need to be clean for the year they're "born", old ones are grandfathered in. So they sit in place and when the coal runs out it gets brought in from elsewhere. I can't imagine using semis: barges or rail are typical.
 
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Duvall WA - Pacific NW USA
I think it has to do with the area (region, state, city, etc) that needs the power. Sometimes the legal $, envirohassle$, politics, and yes jobs, etc make it more expedient to build locally.
 
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Northern CA
 Originally Posted By: wannafbody
I think the US is a might bit bigger than the land down under.
That's accurate except for the spelling. Australia is about 80% as large as the lower 48 states.
 
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1,166
Location
N. Texas
 Originally Posted By: Shannow
Had an American Senior engineer from a very innovative company who supply non OEM spares to the power industry world wide. He stated that he's amazed when he comes to Australia, as we put the power stations where the coal is, while the US it's not uncommon for a station to be situated such that the coal has to be transported by rail for over 1,000 miles. Given that a 1,000MW needs around 10,000 tonnes of coal each and every day that it runs, why on Earth would you intentionally build a power station so far from the coal ? I can think of a few, but in each case they don't make a huge amount of sense: - Job creation...lots of jobs in moving megatonnes around the place. - Lobbying for putting a power station in a particular location...but nobody wants them. - An excuse to build a greater than necessary rail system to move large volumes of stuff in times of crisis. - putting them where the water is...but new dry stations are going up in Oz as we speak. Why ?
Here is another reason:
 Quote:
But many U.S. power plants have chosen to burn low-sulfur western coal to meet Clean Air standards rather than invest in clean-coal technology. That's the case even though they have to burn 25 to 30 percent more western coal to get energy production equivalent to that of eastern coal. Consequently, some eastern mines have closed while mines in western states have opened. Illinois coal production has dropped almost 50 percent since 1990. In 1999, for the first time, more coal was mined west of the Mississippi than east of it.
http://perspect.siuc.edu/05_sp/coal1.html
 

Shannow

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'Stralia
 Originally Posted By: mechtech2
As mentioned above, we have power needs for areas that do not have coal mines near them. We also have means to provide fish for those inland.
But you burn coal at 40% efficiency, versus lose 10% in transmission. It's absolutely senseless to drag coal (using oil), 60% of which you waste, versus burn it where you dig it up from (and therefore have a hole to put the 20% ash). jmacs answer makes the most sense, albeit illustrating an industry that will avoid capital expenditure at any cost.
 
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5,570
Location
New Zealand
We only have one coal powered station in NZ,and it uses more gas than coal.It's right on the river for cooling,and coal is transported by conveyor overland about 10km from an opencast mine.However there is an old mine right on the edge of town,when that was open the coal would only have been transported about 1km. The pit mine on the other side of the river goes under the river and nearly under the power station.It's coal is transported about 40km north to a iron sand steel plant - 2 locos pull a 25 wagon train about 4 times a day,and a couple a day come out of the open cast mine.The trains go right past my work place,so I get to see them all day....rumble,rumble.
 
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1,478
Location
Iowa
 Originally Posted By: eljefino
I can't imagine using semis: barges or rail are typical.
I couldn't imagine supplying a coal plant with semis. Our local coal fired plant gets about one trainload of coal every week from Wyoming. This train is so long it stretches out to the horizon.
 
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