Energy Resource: Coal and Solar Energy Essay

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Can you imagine not being able to plug your cell phone in to charge, or use the microwave, or turn on any lights? These would all not be possible without electricity. Electricity can be produced in many ways. Two ways are through coal and solar energy. The way these two energy sources are produced and the effects they have on the environment are very different but they are both used to produce electricity. Coal is one the fossil fuels in this world. There are four main types of coal. Anthracite, bituminous, sub bituminous, and lignite. Anthracite has 86-97% carbon. It accounts for 0.5% of the coal mined here in the United States. All the mines that have Anthracite in it are located in North-eastern Pennsylvania. (New Century Coal, 2013)…show more content…
In surface mines it is open cut or opencast mining. In underground mining it is room or pillar mining or long wall mining. The tools used during surface mining are draglines which remove over burden, power shovels, large trucks for transport and excavators. (World Coal Association, 2013) The cost of coal is one of the cheapest forms of energy. Coal is expected by many to remain the most affordable. According to IEA statistics coal is 7% cheaper than gas and 19% cheaper than nuclear. The cost of coal varies on the type of transaction. In 2009 the price of coal was $33.24 per ton. The delivery price to power plants was $44.47 per ton. The transportation cost of coal is $11.23 per ton. (World Coal Association, 2013)
Coal is formed from the remains of plant vegetation. The way that coal gets its energy is from carbon. It formed millions of years ago, and the process of coal is a continuing process. (World Coal Association, 2013)
Coal is used for thermal conditions. Coal is mainly used for power generation. Coal is used in steel production. Not only is coal used in steel production, but everyday life things such as soap, aspirins, dyes, and plastics. (World Coal Association, 2013)
Coal is converted into energy by it being mined and then taken to a power plant. The coal gets burned and the steam goes into turbines and the steam turns the turbines. The spinning blades make it go through a generator and then energy is produced. (World Coal Association, 2013)
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