Coal: Research and Development to Support National Energy Policy

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Coal will continue to provide a major portion of energy requirements in the United States for at least the next several decades. It is imperative that accurate information describing the amount, location, and quality of the coal resources and reserves be available to fulfill energy needs. It is also important that the United States extract its coal resources efficiently, safely, and in an environmentally responsible manner. A renewed focus on federal support for coal-related research, coordinated across agencies and with the active participation of the states and industrial sector, is a critical element for each of these requirements.

Coal focuses on the research and development needs and priorities in the areas of coal resource and reserve assessments, coal mining and processing, transportation of coal and coal products, and coal utilization.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780309110228
  • Publisher: National Academies Press
  • Publication date: 11/20/2007
  • Pages: 184
  • Product dimensions: 6.28 (w) x 9.07 (h) x 0.67 (d)

Table of Contents

Summary     1
Introduction     13
Coal in the U.S. Energy Economy     15
Committee Charge and Scope of This Study     19
Committee Process     19
Report Organization-The Coal Fuel Cycle     21
Projections for U.S. and World Coal Use     24
Coal Production Scenarios for the United States     24
International Coal Production Projections     32
How Well Do Models Predict Reality?     39
Findings-Projections for Future Coal Production and Use     40
Coal Resource, Reserve, and Quality Assessments     43
Resource and Reserve Definitions     44
Sources of Coal Resource and Reserve Information     46
U.S. Coal Resource and Reserve Estimates     50
International Coal Resource Assessments     53
Findings and Recommendation-Coal Resource, Reserve, and Quality Assessments     54
Coal Mining and Processing     57
Coal Mining Industry in the United States     57
Coal Mining and Processing Methods     59
Major Coal Mining and Processing Issues     66
Coal Mining and Processing R&D Programs     71
Findings and Recommendations-Coal Mining and Processing     75
Transport ofCoal and Coal Products     80
Transportation by Rail     81
Transportation by Truck     84
Waterborne Coal Transportation     84
Transportation of Coal Exports and Imports     86
Electricity Transmission     86
Transport of Coal-Derived Products     88
Findings-Transport of Coal and Coal Products     89
Coal Utilization     91
Coal Utilization Technologies     91
Environmental Impacts of Coal Use     96
Federal Coal Utilization R&D Programs     101
Findings and Recommendation-Coal Utilization     106
Coal Research Needs and Priorities     108
Societal Issues and Coal     110
Existing Federal Support for Coal-Related R&D     112
Improved Coal Resource, Reserve, and Quality Assessments     116
Research to Support Coal Mining and Processing     118
Transport of Coal and Coal Products     121
Research to Support Coal Utilization     122
Coordination of Coal-Related R&D by Federal Agencies     123
References     128
Committee and Staff Biographies     139
Presentations to the Committee     145
Federal Support for Coal Research     148
Data Tables: U.S. and World Coal Reserves     155
Coal Mining and Processing Methods     160
Acronyms and Abbreviations     167
Unit Conversion Factors and Energy Ratings     170
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