The Dubious Case for Appalachian Coal Subsidies

first_imgThe Dubious Case for Appalachian Coal Subsidies FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Financial Times:As technologies for renewable energy and grid management advance, the special position that coal has held since Thomas Edison’s first power plants in the 1880s has become much harder to defend.The call to subsidize coal is a sign of how the economics of power generation have been transformed. Just five years ago, it was renewable sources that needed subsidies to compete, but their costs have been plummeting. Now the US is phasing out its federal tax breaks for renewable energy, and it is coal producers that are pleading for help.The plight of Appalachian coal owes a lot to a factor specific to the US: the flood of cheap gas unleashed by the shale revolution. Elsewhere, though, there are signs that demand for coal is crumbling.World coal production fell by 6 per cent last year, according to the International Energy Agency, as demand from power plants dropped in the US, Britain and other countries. Even China, long seen as the consumer of last resort, cut its coal use by 1.8 per cent. In Germany, which plunged early into renewable energy when costs were much higher, and sent its electricity prices soaring as a result, coal made a comeback during 2009-13, but here too it is in decline.With the cost argument slipping away, defenders of coal have been shifting to the issue of reliability. (West Virginia Gov. Jim) Justice talks about his hoped-for subsidy as a “national security” incentive, guaranteeing coal to keep grids working.The argument is that as “baseload” coal-fired plants, available to run 24/7, have had to close because of unfavorable economics, grids have become more reliant on variable wind and solar power, raising the risk of blackouts.So far, though, there is little evidence that the rise of renewables has had any impact on reliability. In the US, the share of generation coming from wind and large-scale solar plants has risen from 0.7 per cent in 2005-07 to about 6 per cent in 2014-16, but the number of people affected by an “electric emergency [or] disturbance” has dropped from about 13m a year to about 11m.Other countries with higher use of renewable energy report similar results. Over 2006-16, the proportion of wind and solar power in Britain’s electricity supply grew from 1.3 per cent to 14.2 per cent, but the total number of minutes when customers lost power — excluding “exceptional” events — dropped by 41 per cent.The IEA has argued that countries can source up to 45 per cent of their electricity from wind and solar “without significantly increasing power system costs in the long run”.To go beyond that “calls for a system-wide transformation,” but the technologies to make that possible already exist. In a recent article in the Electricity Journal, Amory Lovins of the Rocky Mountain Institute lists options for balancing the grid that could cost less than coal-fired plants. These include greater efficiency and “demand response” — cutting use to avoid strain on the grid.The barriers to adopting those resources are mostly commercial and political. There is a strong incentive to overcome those obstacles. “Keeping the lights on” has been a rousing rallying cry in the defense of King Coal, but it increasingly looks like a rearguard action.More: ($) The lights are dimming on King Coal’s hold over energy marketslast_img read more

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Omidiran, Kulu-Akinyemi, Falode Challenge Women Players on Education

first_imgNFF President, Amaju Pinnick, charged the women football players to see a role model in the incumbent Head Coach of the Super Falcons, Florence Omagbemi, who captained the Super Falcons for several years and won many laurels, and is today a member of the FIFA Technical Study Group.Omidiran, who funded top club, Omidiran Babes for more than 10 years and is currently a ranking Member of the House of Representatives, told the women players present that education is a lifetime endeavor, and that only education could assure them of a comfortable life after they must have stopped playing the game.Kulu-Akinyemi insisted that “football, like every other sport, has the shortest active years and longest retirement period,” as “an athlete begins to perform at elite level from age 17 and by age 35 on the average, his/her professional career is almost over” as a result of injuries, age, marriage and competition from younger athletes.Falode, leading women’s football promoter and Member of the CAF Media Committee, painted a graphic picture of why women players must have education, citing the examples of Omagbemi, Mercy Akide-Udoh, Abby Wambach, Courtney Dike, Mia Hamm and Eniola Aluko among others.Chairman of the occasion, NFF 2nd Vice President/LMC Chairman, Mr. Shehu Dikko charged the women players present to take home the underlying fact that there is never a time that education cannot be pursued, as long as the determination is there.Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegram Former NFF Board Member, Hon. Ayo Omidiran, Director of Federations and Elite Athletes department of the Federal Ministry of Youth and Sports, Mrs Hauwa Kulu-Akinyemi and CAF Match Commissioner Aisha Falode on Tuesday challenged Nigeria women football players to take education as serious as they take the game of football.The eminent persons spoke at a technical session for players of the Super Falcons, Falconets, NWFL club Nasarawa Amazons and some secondary school girls at the second FIFA Female Leadership Development Programme organized by the Nigeria Football Federation.last_img read more

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Le’Veon Bell has more than $500K in jewelry stolen by ‘girlfriends,’ police say

first_imgLe’Veon Bell had a bad May.Police in Hollywood, Florida told the Associated Press on Wednesday that the Jets running back had $520,000 worth of jewelry stolen from his home May 25. “This felt so good, not doing (anything) for a year and things like that,” Bell said. “I’m excited.”It was amazing, just running around and being able to trash talk and catch some balls, and just sweat in your helmet, and things we take for granted when you’re playing. To have that whole year off, and to come out here and play football again, it felt so good.” Le’Veon Bell says relationship with Jets coach Adam Gase ‘is great’ The report obtained by the Associated Press indicated that Bell returned on the day in question to find his home in disarray along with several items of jewelry missing.He also found the two women gone. The police report referred to the women as Bell’s “girlfriends,” according to the Associated Press. Related Newscenter_img Among the items missing were two gold chains with diamonds, a black panther pendant with black and white diamonds and a Rolex watch.Police are still investigating the matter.Bell reported to Jets camp this week and participated in practice for the first time in a year Tuesday. He had missed all of the team’s voluntary workouts over the previous few weeks. Jets’ Le’Veon Bell makes appearance at mandatory minicamplast_img read more

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Conte blundered with Febregas final snub, claims ex-Chelsea favourite

first_imgRay Wilkins claims Chelsea boss Antonio Conte blundered by leaving Cesc Fabregas out of his FA Cup final side.The Blues were denied a league and cup double as they were beaten 2-1 by Arsenal at Wembley on Saturday afternoon, but Wilkins believes it could have been a different story had the Spaniard been involved from the start.Instead, Conte preferred Nemanja Matic in the central midfield role alongside N’Golo Kante and the game was past the hour mark before former Gunner Fabregas was introduced into the action.And ex-Stamford Bridge player and coach Wilkins feels the decision to bench Fabregas, who has been in brilliant form in the closing weeks of the season, cost the Premier League champions.“You saw the Italian coach come out in Conte in that he went with two holding midfielders, rather than putting in the one who could create and open up Arsenal,” Wilkins said on the Alan Brazil Sports Breakfast.“The game was crying out for Fabregas to be put on at half-time. He’s the one player who can open teams up with one pass and I would have played him.”Cesc Fabregas unhappy with FA Cup final snub and refuses to rule out summer exitlast_img read more

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