Saturday, February 18, 2017

Heating with electricity much less efficient

Plans to use renewables generally means using electricity as distribution when talking about large scale application. However just switching from coal to electricity for heat is already a significant loss of energy.

The “Wind and Solar Will Save Us” Delusion | Our Finite World: "The underlying problem is that burning coal in a power plant produces a better, but more expensive, product. If this electricity is used for a process that coal cannot perform directly, such as allowing a new automobile production plant, then this higher cost is easily  absorbed by the economy. But if this higher-cost product simply provides a previously available service (heating) in a more expensive manner, it becomes a difficult cost for the economy to “digest.” It becomes a very expensive fix for China’s smog problem. It should be noted that this change works in the wrong direction from a CO2 perspective, because ultimately, more coal must be burned for heating because of the inefficiency of converting coal to electricity, and then using that electricity for heating."

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