Producing Liquid Fuels from Coal: Prospects and Policy Issues [NOOK Book]


Large U.S. coal reserves and viable technology make promising a domestic
industry producing liquid fuels from coal. Weighing benefits, costs, and
environmental issues, a productive and robust U.S. strategy is to promote a
limited amount of early commercial experience in ...
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Producing Liquid Fuels from Coal: Prospects and Policy Issues

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Large U.S. coal reserves and viable technology make promising a domestic
industry producing liquid fuels from coal. Weighing benefits, costs, and
environmental issues, a productive and robust U.S. strategy is to promote a
limited amount of early commercial experience in coal-to-liquids production
and to prepare the foundation for managing associated greenhouse-gas
emissions, both in a way that reduces uncertainties and builds future
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780833046765
  • Publisher: RAND Corporation, The
  • Publication date: 11/3/2008
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 198
  • File size: 5 MB

Meet the Author

James T. Bartis (Ph.D., Massachusetts Institute of Technology) is a senior policy analyst at RAND.
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Table of Contents

Preface iii

Figures xi

Tables xiii

Summary xv

Acknowledgments xxvii

Abbreviations xxix

Chapter 1 Introduction 1

About This Book 2

Chapter 2 The Coal Resource Base 5

The Adequacy of the U.S. Coal Resource Base 6

The Distribution of U.S. Coal Reserves and Production 9

Coal Variability 10

Mine Size 12

Policy Implications of the Coal Resource Base 12

Chapter 3 Coal-to-Liquids Technologies 15

The Fischer-Tropsch Coal-to-Liquids Approach 15

The Methanol-to-Gasoline Coal-to-Liquids Approach 23

The Direct Coal Liquefaction Approach 26

Baseline Greenhouse-Gas Emissions from Production of Coal-Derived Liquid Fuels 31

Carbon Capture and Sequestration 32

Alternative Carbon-Management Options 37

Technical Viability and Commercial Readiness 41

Production Costs 42

Timeline for Coal-to-Liquids Development 46

Chapter 4 Other Unconventional Fuels 49

Commercially Ready Unconventional Fuels 50

Emerging Unconventional Fuels 52

Summary 57

Chapter 5 Benefits of Coal-to-Liquids Development 59

Economic Profits 60

Reductions in the World Price of Oil 61

National Security Benefits 66

Improved Petroleum Supply Chain 67

Oil-Supply Disruption Benefits 68

Employment Benefits 69

Confounding or Inconclusive Arguments 70

The Economic Value of a Domestic Coal-to-Liquids Industry 71

Chapter 6 Critical Policy Issues for Coal-to-Liquids Development 73

Environmental Impacts of Coal-to-Liquids Production 73

Impediments to Private-Sector Investment 81

Chapter 7 Designing Incentives to Encourage Private Investment 85

Designing an Effective Long-Term Public-Private Relationship 86

Assessing Financial Effects Under Conditions of Uncertainty88

Findings and Policy Implications 91

Promoting Competition 100

Summary 101

Chapter 8 Moving Forward with a Coal-to-Liquids Development Effort 103

Prevailing Uncertainties 103

The Military Perspective 104

Federal Policy Options 106

An Insurance Policy 109

Air Force Options for Coal-to-Liquids Industrial Development 113

Scoping Federal Efforts: How Much Is Enough? 117

A Stable Framework for Reducing World Oil Prices 118


A Cost-Estimation Methodology and Assumptions 119

B Greenhouse-Gas Emissions: Supporting Analysis 123

C A Model of the Global Liquid-Fuel Market 137

References 155

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