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Save the world with internal combustion engines

Who cares about 50% more emissions?

China, energy, power generation, 2016, graph.

China is powered by 65% coal.

A new study in China compares cars with internal combustion engines to electric cars. Qiao et al estimate that from cradle-to-gate electric cars use about 50% more energy and produce around 50% more emissions. (Thanks to Kenneth Richards at NoTricksZone.)

All Greens should hereby recycle their EV and buy a gas guzzler.

This is not even “lifetime costs” which include disposal.

These results will come as no surprise to people who remember the detailed study in Norway of 2012 which found that “…in regions where fossil fuels are the main sources of power, electric cars offer no benefits and may even cause more harm, the report said.”

In China, these electric cars are powered by 65% coal. Call them “coal-fired-cars”.

The largest single difference was with the battery.

Below, marvel at the results of the Chinese study. (ICE means Internal Combustion Engine.  BEV means Battery Electric Vehicle.)

Not. Even. Close.

If you think CO2 matters, oil powered cars beat coal powered ones.

Electric cars, graph, internal combustion engine, emissions, energy use. 2017.

ICE = Internal Combustion Engine:  BEV = Battery Electric Vehicle. By every measure Electric cars use more energy and emit more CO2.

Even if electric vehicles are powered by the wind, there are other costs. For the UK to power a national electric fleet they’d have to turn Scotland into a wind farm. (We need stationary batteries to supply the mobile batteries. Add up the losses.) In Australia there are estimates that each extra electric car could cost another $2000 per year in network and generation costs. (Let’s add that to the registration cost for an EV shall we?)

Key messages

  • Greenhouse gas emissions of battery electric vehicles are 50% higher than internal combustion engine vehicles.
  • Traction battery production causes about 20% greenhouse gas emissions increase.
  • 10% variations of curb weight, electricity and Li-ion battery production affect the results by 7%, 4% and 2%.

 

Abstract

Electric drive vehicles are equipped with totally different propulsion systems compared with conventional vehicles, for which the energy consumption and cradle-to-gate greenhouse gas emissions associated with vehicle production could substantially change. In this study, the life cycle energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions of vehicle production are compared between battery electric and internal combustion engine vehicles in China’s context. The results reveal that the energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions of a battery electric vehicle production range from 92.4 to 94.3 GJ and 15.0 to 15.2 t CO2eq, which are about 50% higher than those of an internal combustion engine vehicle, 63.5 GJ and 10.0 t CO2eq. This substantial change can be mainly attributed to the production of traction batteries, the essential components for battery electric vehicles. Moreover, the larger weight and different weight distribution of materials used in battery electric vehicles also contribute to the larger environmental impact. This situation can be improved through the development of new traction battery production techniques, vehicle recycling and a low-carbon energy structure.

h/t to ROM

REFERENCES

Qiao et al (2017)  Cradle-to-gate greenhouse gas emissions of battery electric and internal combustion engine vehicles in China  Volume 204, 15 October 2017, Pages 1399-1411  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.apenergy.2017.05.041

China’s power generation graph: latest figures from the China Electricity Council, via NRDC .

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64 comments to Save the world with internal combustion engines

  • #
    Lionell Griffith

    Obviously, everything is cheaper if you ignore the cost to build, to maintain, to operate, and the unintended consequences that come along for the ride. If you do that, the energy consumed is always free.

    The challenge is to get someone else to pay the costs and to keep quiet about it. After all, if no one talks about it, it doesn’t exist. Or so the green blob wants everyone to think.

    I have found that everything has a cost. Somethings have a benefit. Even fewer things have a benefit that exceeds the costs. It is guaranteed by the Three Laws of Thermodynamics if nothing else.

    Capitalism takes this into account to maximize benefits over costs for everyone even for the government. Socialism ignores it and increases the costs for everyone except for government apparatchiks.

    451

    • #

      The electric vehicle argument is based on exactly the same premise as ‘renewables’. They are cheaper etc because the hidden cost of subsidies, backup-power generation etc are ignored.

      Every Green’s argument is based on exactly the same flawed premise/s.

      381

      • #
        Greg Cavanagh

        I disagree; the vehicle itself is more than double the average car. That right there is the first clue.

        91

        • #

          The cost of the vehicle itself is somewhat immaterial; a Ferrari costs more than a Camry. It’s the hidden costs that are important, not just subsidies and hidden power generation, but perhaps even the human costs involved in sourcing the materials required for electric vehicles, the environmental costs of future disposal of batteries etc.

          140

          • #
            OriginalSteve

            It was interesting the Mythbusters proved you could actually polish a poo.

            In technology terms, electric cars are the equivelent…..

            140

            • #

              The thing is poo can be useful. What I always find amazing is that the Greens will support anything that appears to save the planet, but ignore completely the unintended consequences of such actions.

              They don’t care that people exist in abhorrent conditions extracting the materials needed for the batteries, windmills and solar panels. They don’t care that the mining operations cause massive pollution. They don’t care that windmills and solar power plants kill massive numbers of birds, including endangered species. They don’t care that all these batteries and solar panels are left for future generations to find a way to dispose of them safely. They won’t allow forest clearing and undergrowth burning to prevent wildfires that destroy everything.

              Everything is just for the here and now, and for appearance sake. Nothing is genuine.

              280

              • #
                OriginalSteve

                Its interesting, I detect a type of mean-ness & harshness with quite a few of the greens I have encountered…… these I think might be the hard core urban greens.

                Now its important to note I have also met some really lovely greens who genuinely care about the planet and people.

                Within the hard core greens, you could understand why communists would feel at home….. I often wondered if you had a break down of law and order, the hard core bunch are the first lot you would pacify by whatever means necessary, in order to maintain law and order for the broader community as I believe they just cant be trusted.

                101

              • #
                Mall

                Greens equals fake news.

                40

          • #
            Saighdear

            I think you’ve missed the point here? “The cost of the vehicle itself is somewhat immaterial;” Ferrari v Camry… are you referring to the RETAIL P R I C E ? This is often confused by JoPublic and played upon by savvy Journo’s to scewer an event. Monetary COST of Production is, I suggest, what is being referred to here, regarding conventionally powered vehicles as opposed to Electrically powered. Retail prices of many goods do NOT ALWAYS bear any relationship to the Production costs. Often eg OIL is expensive to consume like whisky, due to Government Taxation: from Taxes incurred in the production processes, Consumption tax, and the our beloved Value-added tax, etc

            20

    • #
      Geoff

      Australia has 800 Billion barrels of oil locked up in its near surface coal. This oil is C6-C20 n-ane, n-enes, phenols. It can be had using solvents to separate the oil from the coal pores at an oil on process cost of sub US$10/BoE. Then you can export the coal as high quality, low volatile, low sulphur carbon.

      The idea that an EV can compete with this is silly. Its ONLY government mandate that can affect this outcome. So untold riches on one side of belief, living in caves on the other.

      80

  • #
    Ted O'Brien.

    Why did it take so long for this to get out?

    I never tried to do the accounting myself, but alway knew that the people promoting electric vehicles hadn’t done it either. Indeed many of them clearly believed that the plug in electricity had no cost.

    On the other side of the ledger, whether the batteries be lead or lithium, the disposal will be by recycling, not by landfill.

    250

    • #
      Ted O'Brien.

      “Even if electric vehicles are powered by the wind”.

      They claim, many of them believe, that the wind has no cost. We are at a serious disadvantage when we have to try to persuade such foolishness of its errors.

      310

      • #
        Annie

        Wind, sun, coal, oil, water, wood have no cost: the trouble is that the infrastructure to use them has a very high cost indeed. Nothing is ‘free’ as the blob like to kid you in regard to sun and wind.

        160

    • #
      Geoff

      People get solar panels for the house and don’t do the numbers. They hate the power companies. The solar panel is just a reaction to power bill spike. So for them and a large amount of the populous, its personal. They can never remove their eyes from their navels. A conversation with these people ALWAYS reverts to them, versus the subject. Trying to move the conversation back to the subject upsets them.

      These people are a politician’s wet dream. Easily manipulated by vote buying.

      162

      • #
        Geoff Sherrington

        Populace?

        40

      • #

        For some of us, solar panels are the result of expecting this renewables nonsense to last a lot longer. I now pay a minimal amount in electric bills. If that goes on, I benefit, others pay. The inevitable result will be the whole scam falling apart. So it’s win-win.
        Yes we hate the power companies because some of their staff know that this is not going to work, but they are weak-minded. Along with pollies, so-called journalists, lawyers, judges … the pandemic has a few years to run.

        130

        • #
          OriginalSteve

          Id agree. I dont hate energy companies. Id be inclined to put on solar panels to maintain a form of energy independence, free from interference of pursuing a life of quiet enjoyment, liberty and freedom.

          40

          • #
            OriginalSteve

            Poor punctuation…..should read

            “….free from interference, of pursuing a life of quiet enjoyment, liberty and freedom.”

            Coffee no.2 coming up….

            20

          • #
            D. J. Hawkins

            A grid-tied solar array will not give you energy independence. When the power goes out, the inverter will automatically disconnect your panels, preventing the use of any of the power they produce. You must have some form of energy storage to become truly independent, which then acts a place for the panels to dump their output. Inverters that are smart enough to know when to send power to the grid and when to send it to your batteries are not cheap, and keeping the system up and running can require more tech savvy than possessed by the average bear. Not to mention the ruinous cost to provide enough storage for 3-4 days of overcast or only partly sunny.

            90

            • #
              Duster

              You don’t need to be totally independent, and with a good storage system the right inverter, you can pass excess power production to the utility. So, a solar array adequate to power a house, with inverter and storage (depends on latitude) acts as a secondary load balancing system and reduces the overall load, house by house. In Central California utilities already charge a “solar surcharge” that is used to help pay for the utility to pay for its own arrays. Utilities already limit just how large an installation a private house can have installed based on “average annual power use.” That shows several things. First the utilities are really intending to stay in business and want to limit small time competition (they would prefer not to pay the “customer”). Second, they have a “centralized mentality” very like the old Soviet mindset that allowed western intelligence agencies to monitor military readiness by tracking the availability of critical elements like batteries. One or a very few centralized factories made that extremely easy. With electricity, a utility with a limited number of generation facilities can limit the production and maximize costs to consumers and the “non”-profit of the operation, meaning bonuses for managers. If all new construction generated a significant amount of its own power, and the older structures were generally retrofitted, the utility becomes less critical. In fact tactical police actions like turning the power to an urban area with civil unrest becomes difficult. The approach could put the “municipal” back in utility.

              12

              • #
                Gerry, England

                Ignoring the poor grid operater trying to balance a grid with uncontrolled power coming in all over the place.

                30

    • #
      PeterPetrum

      Ted, you must have seen the AGL advert “recharge your car for only $1 a day” – $365 per year; that is more than I spend on my fuel and I bet I get a lot more mileage for my $365 than they do, plus I can do 600km without a refil – simples!

      70

    • #
      Saighdear

      I like the bit ..”…will be by recycling, not landfill…” uhuh, what about those vehicles set on fire, land in water, etc. We (as a nation) get sooooooh excited about some Reactor fuel being transported around the country in very strong METAL boxes, don’t we ? A conventional machine in the water or on fire doesn’t create much grief…. – all that Plastic being burnt. BLACK SMOKE. Oooh wait a mo! ,,,, BLACK SMOKE – what’s that ? from burning Poly.. Insulation materials in factories/ storage….

      20

  • #
    Spetzer86

    Stupid picky point, but isn’t the phrase “cradle to grave”?

    61

  • #
    Ted O'Brien.

    I refuse to allow the substitution of the word “curb” for “kerb”. Different word, different meaning.

    Even if government departments are doing it.

    70

    • #
      Lawrie

      Curb means to limit and is a verb. Kerb is a physical barrier and is a noun.

      A good political campaigner could use this research to start awakening the Australian public to the misinformation coming from the elite including that turncoat Freydenberg. Josh has drunk the cool aid to keep a well paid job in a dysfunctional government.

      160

      • #
        Robert Swan

        Here’s a case of Muphry’s Law. Yes, kerb weight should definitely not be spelt “curb weight”, but neither should Kool-Aid be spelt “cool aid” (though I’m inclined to quibble that the manufacturer should have spelt it “Kool-ade” on the pattern of lemonade, etc.).

        80

  • #
    Yonniestone

    As was the question from the start IF the claimed anthropogenic driven climate change WAS such a dire problem for everyone on this planet then WHY wasn’t,

    A: The CO2 emissions calculations done on both fossil & wind/solar/battery that would’ve found the latter worse in terms of CO2 mitigation.

    B: The globally agreed fast tracking of Nuclear power plants with the trillions of dollars from governments going directly into the project.

    C: The trillions raised so far NOT being wasted on excessive bureaucratic positions and useless stop gap measures that slows the intent of CO2 reduction.

    D: A global open scientific investigation totally void of any self interests was conducted to decide if any CO2 reductions was necessary before any of the above was needed.

    Sensible people know the answers insensitive people hide them while insensible people follow the answers given on their behalf.

    250

  • #
    Robert Rosicka

    This was worked out before but that compared a Datsun 4 cylinder or most older cars that are still going .

    30

  • #
    Another Ian

    No doubt this will take a while to work through the thick layer of egg on various faces

    70

  • #
    Steve Richards

    Should coke be a separate line item from coal? Where does coke come from and how much energy is used to create it?

    70

  • #
    TdeF

    Out of the nonsense comes some good. Electric cars save nothing, except perhaps fumes in crowded downtown areas and old towns like Amsterdam. Even removing the noise raises the chance of accidents, if you have ever experienced an electric car in pedestrian traffic. Dangerous.

    Self charging Hybrid cars will change everything decreasing fuel consumption dramatically, at least 40% in city areas by regenerative braking. I cannot understand why taxis companies have not moved immediately to hybrids as their city fuel consumption in stop start driving matches country driving and fuel is perhaps the biggest running cost. The Toyota hybrids work very well. La Ferrari shows that hybrids do not have to be slugs.

    What is hard to understand is the Tesla. 9 hours to recharge from a normal power point if you can find one on the way to Broken Hill and nothing at all if the battery runs flat. A lot of the power is wasted in hauling 540kg of batteries around in the Tesla S, equivalent in weight to 540 litres of fuel. Naturally the car is a little spartan to compensate, but for people who get annoyed at taking a few minutes to refuel, even the 15 minutes at a rare high speed charging station will feel like forever. 9 hours is overnight.

    Still, Jay Weatherill thought Musk had the answer to South Australia’s energy problems. His new $50-$100Million battery (actual price a trade secret apparently, even from voters) was surrounded by blackouts on the day it was turned on. That was unfortunate as South Australia was struck by a Category 5 tropical storm at the same time and the battery was of course useless.

    What is also obvious from this exercise is how politicians and governments hide the massive taxes. The massive RET is hidden, $6Billion a year giving us the world’s highest electricity prices. These taxes are called ‘subsidies’.

    In Victoria this morning, Daniel Andrews is going to extend tolls on roads we now own, until 2045 to help pay for his next bright idea, having spent $1.2billion to cancel a much needed tunnel. His own committee recommended the tunnel as the most urgent project in the state and everyone wants it, except Daniel and friends.

    So the banks and the governments conspire to hit you with taxes of which you are unaware.
    Taxes in your rapidly rising water bills, to pay for unused desalination plants and pipelines and general revenue. Taxes in your road tolls, to pay for monuments to politicians.
    Taxes in your electricity bills to pay to shut down and blow up working coal power stations.
    Taxes to subsidize businesses which are being forced to close because of super high electricity prices.
    Taxes to subsidize the tens of thousands of ordinary people who can no longer afford electricity.
    Taxes in your gas bills, to keep gas in the ground as Victoria pays a 50% premium on gas to bring it all the way from Queensland when we have plenty of our own.

    All in the name of Climate Change.

    270

    • #
      TdeF

      Yesterday the big defence news was not the nuclear missile threat from North Korea or Iran or even Pakistan, not the continuing crisis in the Ukraine or the tension between Germany’s Europe and Russia, not conflict with Indonesia for which we bought the F111s, but that the biggest threat to our defence is now.. Climate Change.

      You have to wonder if Christopher Pyne’s front line French submarines after 2030 will cope with the 0.8 degree increase in world temperature since 1900 or the slightly hotter waters around the Great Barrier Reef. Is there no massive Government borrowing, no pork barrelling, no taxation grab which does not use Climate Change as the entire excuse?

      97% of Climate Scientists (which by definition excludes professional Meteorologists) agree that more money is needed to study and fight Climate Change. At least in the absence of Global Warming for the last two decades.

      190

    • #
      OriginalSteve

      All in the name of crippling a state to impose communism….

      My rather right wing great aunt has not much positive to say about Commisar Andrews.

      At some stage dopey and ignorant victorians will wake up…..

      110

  • #

    Norway and Australia have something in common: each aspires to be green through the reduction of fossil fuel consumption and each pays for the reduction of fossil fuel consumption by the production and export of massive quantities of…

    You have to guess.

    220

  • #
    Gordon

    I mentioned this some time ago, here is a link. Read and laugh.Saving the climate could doom us all!

    http://nationalpost.com/news/world/wind-energy-is-supposed-to-fight-climate-change-but-climate-change-is-fighting-back

    70

  • #
    Mark M

    Now, I love the roar of an internal combustion engine, but, if you can view twitter this advert for Jeremy Clarksons’s new show has this …

    A drag race that nobody expected:

    https://twitter.com/thegrandtour/status/938804444409597952

    30

    • #
      Robert Swan

      Fun video. I don’t have a Twitter account, but the comments seem to bear out the reputation: shallow.

      They seem to think that losing a drag race is enough to consign the ICE to the scrapheap. The race demonstrates raw power and not much else. How would that electric car go against the various supercars in the Bathurst 12-hour? In that race, I’d back my ~30yo Peugeot against it. Or try to cross Germany by autobahn and see how long the incredible speed lasts. Old Pug might win that one too.

      The impracticalities of battery powered vehicles are related to the battery, not the motor.

      60

    • #
      OriginalSteve

      if you look at the power to weight ratioos:

      Rimac is 0.263 hp/lb
      Ferrari 358 is 0.194 hp/lb

      Obiosuly there are other factors that come into play like aerodynamics, rolling resistance etc.

      But its well known that most sparks will out-drag a petrol due to 100% torque from the off. But funily enough, despite working as an electircal eng, I much prefer a petrol any time, somthing about the noise and fun you can have….electrics…yup…like driving a dull vacuum cleaner…..

      30

      • #
        Carbon500

        OriginalSteve: you say that: “despite working as an electrical engineer, I much prefer a petrol any time, something about the noise and fun you can have….electrics…yup…like driving a dull vacuum cleaner…..”
        Agreed entirely! I watched a ‘Formula E’ race on the television – absolutely characterless cars, and, hilariously, because the batteries didn’t have the capacity,a fresh car has to be trundled out about halfway through the race. I won’t be watching Formula E again.
        Regarding road cars, let’s consider a few examples – classic cars all: Lotus Elan, Ferrari 250 GTO and many others, Jaguar E-type (and other models as well), Porsche 911 (and assorted other Porsches – notably the monstrous 917),Alfa Romeo (’50s or ’60s) – all stir the blood. There will never, ever, be an electric car to rival these giants.
        All of these and many more are fastidiously maintained by enthusiasts – doing their bit for the environment. Don’t scrap it – repair it!

        10

  • #
    Ruairi

    The truth about transport, electric,
    Should drive all the Greens apoplectic.
    If emissions were twice,
    As much as from I.C.E.,
    It would not surprise any skeptic.

    200

  • #
    Håkan Bergman

    As long as there’s coal fired power plants operating in a system and the idea with EVs is to lower CO2 emissions you have to look how added demand influences the market. Here in Scandinavia we export quite a lot of electricity, carbonfree yea, Norway hydro and Sweden hydro and nuclear. Cheap, clean energy that German coal can’t compete with, but if we start to use it to charge Teslas only German coal plants will benefit. So I would say that as long as there’s dirty coal on the grid EVs must be assumed to run on coal. And even worse, it’s the oldest and most inefficient hard coal plants the Tesla owners are saving from going bust.

    40

  • #
    Gerry

    Then to think that some countries (http://reneweconomy.com.au/uk-ban-gas-diesel-cars-2040/) want to phase out liquid fuelled vehicles by the mid 40s. Take Australia’s’ case, we consume approximately 90 mgl of liquid fuels per day. This equates to 900 gigawatt hours of energy (~ 10kw/h per litre of diesel or petrol). We would need to cover 200,000 km2 (1.5mgw/82 acres) with wind turbines to generate this amount of energy (Victoria’s total area 238,000 km2).
    What happens when the wind takes a rest. Anyway the whole proposition is ludicrous.

    110

    • #
      ivan

      Don’t forget the wind farms are changing global wind patterns and slowing down overall wind speed so they are going to need more of them to get the same output. We could say it is spiraling out of control in both directions – more units less output.

      10

  • #

    Through so much of the latest Green Follies the price of diesel (aka fairy dust supplementation) has been low and interest rates have been in the toilet. The carbon “price” has been keeping interest rates company in the toilet through blatant EU manipulation which amounts to carbon price setting (aka taxation). Meanwhile domestic Australian coal power has been disdained while being flogged for all it’s worth, like the reliable old servant who does all the hard work but who’s lodged with the hounds and fed slops.

    Now, let’s just say there’s a bit of a scuffle in the Middle East at the same time that banks decide to tickle up the cost of money, or to stop inventing money while there’s all this talk of gold-backed yuan, roubles etc. Then a cash-strapped EU decides it had better save the planet a bit harder, even if that means collapsing an industry or two. Then Asian economies just don’t have the customers they used to have…

    You wouldn’t have to move to Adelaide. Adelaide would come to you.

    110

  • #
    el gordo

    ‘…land surfaces are warming up more rapidly than are ocean surfaces…’

    Sea surface temperatures are cooling and the land is going to follow suite in the fullness of time.

    The Southern Hemisphere is blessed by the Roaring Forties, but when the Southern Annular Mode is positive there is little wind. This all comes down to the intensity of the Subtropical Ridge (high pressure belt) and it appears that the STR lost its intensity in late July.

    The irony is that the wind will blow strongly in the SH under a global cooling scenario.

    50

  • #
    Richard

    For all the handwaving about saving the earth with electric cars, honest studies refuse to play that game.

    But one advantage to electric cars like the Tesla remains: due to their highly computerized and completely fly-by-wire design, they can be taken over by the manufacturer or government, and returned home, returned to the manufacturer, or sent with locked doors directly to the police station.

    This may not be an advantage to the owner, but those who love totalitarian concepts…

    50

  • #

    Some strange statistics here. The Chart on China’s power generation is inaccurate with regard to Nuclear and with wind.
    No one except the top level of the party in China knows the extent of nuclear power. I suggest it is more than double (ie +3.6-5%) while actual delivered wind maybe one tenth (ie -3.6% -to my knowledge none is connected to the grid). China is building many nuclear stations and have an aim for Nuclear to deliver 15-20% by 2030. Hydro is important to China. I saw the 3 gorges dam on a visit and had the layout and capacity explained. They originally ordered 6 *660 MW turbine generator sets from different countries eg from USA (GE), Germany and Japan. They copied the best of the technology then added 28 * 700MW units of their own design and manufacture. The total capacity of the one power station is 22,000 MW which is more than the total generation capacity of most countries. China has just started to exploit hydro in Tibet which is a province they will never give up. During my visit I saw some other power stations which were supplied by coal with barges. I saw what appeared to be a new Nuclear power station – it had some rounded domes, a couple of cooling towers but no coal receival or stockpiles. I asked different guides about them and some stall holders in the nearby town. They all clammed up or changed the subject. Not once during my tour did I see any solar panels (even on domestic high class rural housing) or any wind turbines of any size.
    Next, some one above asked about coke in one of the diagrams. Coke is artificial. It is produced from coal. When making coke in a coke oven gas is produced. This is mostly used for process heat but can also be used to produce power. From the gas some liquid chemicals and bitumen can be recovered. What the Japanese call semi-soft coking coal can be injected straight into iron/steel blast furnaces. The Chinese are importing coking coal from Australia.

    60

  • #
    Alan

    Cementafriend

    During my visit I saw some other power stations which were supplied by coal with barges. I saw what appeared to be a new Nuclear power station – it had some rounded domes, a couple of cooling towers but no coal receival or stockpiles.

    Happened to do a Med cruise out of Civitavecchia, Rome’s port in May this year. Near the port is a coal fired power station(3 x 660 MW units) which was converted 10 or so years ago from oil. This link has a photo showing the covered conveyors and dome-shape storage facilities. The site is in Italian but is the only one I located with a quick search. Might be what you saw in the PRC.

    20

    • #

      No Alan, I have experience with various types of coal storage. I suppose that you did not notice in these photos the conveyors transporting coal to the top centre of the circular storage for distribution. I suppose also you did not notice the conveyor feeding the boiler house. The power station I saw had no conveyors and the domes were raised like a very large version of the Lucas Heights reactor. My guess was that there were two reactors each supplying steam to a turbine generator set of 1000MW and each having a cooling tower for the circulated water used to condense the steam at the turbine. Mt Piper power steam (past Lithgow) has two cooling towers for each of the two 700MW turbines.

      20

      • #
        Alan

        Yep I noticed all that, pretty obvious really, but did you spot the cooling towers?. So was what you saw a “new Nuclear power station as you state” or coal-fired? Your description is very unclear

        10

        • #

          Cooling water is required to condense the steam at the turbines so water can be pumped back to the boiler. Steam turbines are used with both coal fired boilers and nuclear reactors. Cooling towers are usually a better option than drawing water from a lake or using seawater (too much corrosion). The cooling towers are related to the turbines. The diameter is an indicator of the size of the turbines. As I said I thought that the power station I saw was a nuclear plant with two reactors each having a steam turbine which I estimated to be about 1000MW.
          I also hinted that it was difficult for anyone to go around the country to determine how many nuclear power stations there are in China. There is a degree of secrecy and it is likely for many plants there are barriers to access. China is a nuclear power. They got most of their information from the Russians but now probably are more advanced in nuclear technology than the USA because they are spending more in building and in research. They know exactly what the North Koreans are doing. The Chinese have a number of satellites which can detect not only spy planes but also spy satellites.

          20

  • #
    Roy Hogue

    A new study in China compares cars with internal combustion engines to electric cars. Qiao et al estimate that from cradle-to-gate electric cars use about 50% more energy and produce around 50% more emissions. (Thanks to Kenneth Richards at NoTricksZone.)

    Put that in your pipe and smoke it, California. Maybe your plan to outlaw the sale of anything but all electric vehicles in California by some magic date or other isn’t such a good thing after all. Who would think that there’s an energy loss in all those golden save-the-earth EVs, the generators and transmission lines. And then, somewhere where you least expect it there’s a guess what, making steam to turn those generators — a good old fossil fuel burning boiler, that’s what.

    Hey Jerry, are you listening?

    Don’t anyone shout too loud though. I wouldn’t want to wake him up so he could come up with an even worse idea. :-(

    00