December 2001
Volume 53    Issue 12

Making medium- and high-sulfur coals competitive

Mining Engineering , 2001, Vol. 53, No. 12, pp. 29-33
Sevim, H.; Huang, B.; Patwardhan, A.; Honaker, R.

Phase II of the 1990 Clean Air Act Amendment (CAAA) requires that all utility units greater than 25 MW emit at a rate less than 1.2 lb SO2/million Btu. A number of power stations have adapted allowance-based compliance strategies since the beginning of Phase I of the CAAA in 1995. To become compliant, other stations that had used high-sulfur coal, such as Illinois coal, have switched to low-sulfur coal obtained from mines in the western part of the United States. In Illinois, fuel switching caused coal production to plummet from 54 Mt (60 million st) in 1990 to 36 Mt (40 million st) in 1998. The demand for utility coal, however, is expected to increase after the year 2000 in response to the projected growth in coal-fired power generation in central and eastern regions of the United States (Keefe at al., 1996).

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