Download Beyond Oil and Gas: The Methanol Economy by George A. Olah PDF

By George A. Olah

A truly helpful assessment on present and destiny strength resources and effort vendors and an inspiring concept on methanol as a destiny carbon impartial strength service.

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Initially, peat (the precursor of coal) is converted into lignite or brown coal – both coal-types with low organic maturity. With exposure to high pressure and temperatures over millions of years, lignite is progressively transformed into sub-bituminous coals. Lignite and sub-bituminous coal are lower grades of coals which contain higher concentration of water. They are softer, friable materials and have a low energy content, between 5700 kcal kg–1 and 4165 kcal kg–1 for sub-bituminous coal, and less for lignite.

In 2000, they contributed to 85% of the energy consumption in the United States, and to 86% worldwide. The fossil fuels used are all different forms of hydrocarbons: coal, oil, and natural gas, all differing in their hydrogen to carbon ratio. To liberate their energy content and to power our electric plants, heat our houses, and to propel our cars and airplanes, the fuels must be burned, forming CO2 and water. Consequently, they are non-renewable. This means that on the human time-scale they cannot be naturally regenerated and are only available in a finite amount on Earth.

Longer-term prospects for coal may therefore depend on the development and introduction of clean coal technologies that would reduce or even eliminate carbon emissions. In any case, coal resources will not last for more than two or three centuries – longer than oil and gas, but still a short period on the time scale of humanity. 17 18 Chapter 3 History of Oil and Natural Gas Chapter 3 History of Oil and Natural Gas Oil and gas, in similar manner to coal, are generally the result of the degradation of organic materials, primarily plankton, which settled on the seafloor millions of years ago.

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