RTEC Breakfast Energy Forum

RTEC fosters an integrated approach to energy incorporating technology, economics and policy to stimulate action, with an emphasis on the grand challenges in energy today.  At each breakfast forum we will discuss a topic announced in advance.  A short presentation by the moderator will introduce the topic and set the stage for discussion. No slides will be presented but a flip chart will be available for on the spot illustration.  A moderated discussion will endeavor to shed light on the topic.

We will stop right on 8.30 AM, but the room will be available for another 30 minutes for informal discourse for those that choose to stay.  The breakfast forums are scheduled to occur on the third Thursday of each month unless otherwise noted.

Date:               Thursday, February 15, 2018

Time:              7.30 – 8.30 AM

Location:        Advanced Technology Building, 3021 E Cornwallis Road

Cost:               None.  RTEC will cover expenses

This month’s topic:   IS TRUMP’S “CLEAN COAL” AN OXYMORON?  You may be wrong, but you may be right, from “You may be right” by Billy Joel, 1980, written by Billy Joel

What the President meant by the term in his SOTU speech is anybody’s guess.  But we can look at it in many ways, with two broad features: airborne hazardous species and CO2.  And we can consider two principal industrial sources: electricity production and coal to liquids.  A significant example of the latter is coal to methanol, with the methanol in particular targeting gasoline and diesel displacement.  The Chinese are doing this in a big way, and India is expected to follow.  The airborne species are only as a result of direct combustion.  But all methods lead to CO2 production.  Avoidance of direct combustion will make coal cleaner.  What of the CO2?  It certainly can be put away in the ground in some places.  The highest cost component of sequestration has always been capture, not storage.  It could also be used for tertiary recovery of oil.  Co-locate sinks and sources?  Then there is the more research stage CO2 conversion to useful stuff.  Even electric vehicles are implicated: cleanliness of the electricity.  Finally, we could even discuss the consequences of Presidential utterances on this.

Breakfast is by Invitation Only.  Please send additional requests to dar@rti.org

Previous Breakfast Forum topics