19 Dec '11, 12pm

What will the U.S. power mix look like in 10 to 20 years?

What will the U.S. power mix look like in 10 to 20 years?

For fueled-CHP (e.g., excluding CHP from waste heat recovery), natural gas has always long been the fuel of choice, because it's so much easier to permit than oil or solid-fuel plants. When the "gas boom" took off in the 2000s (see the third graphic here ), bringing billions of dollars of investment into gas-fired power plants, gas-fired CHP also took off. This accounts for almost all of the 2002-2003 spike in CHP deployments. When natural gas prices rose in response to all that new demand, investment in all gas-fired projects fell, explaining the 2004 crash. The 2005 Energy Bill (which was in the works through much of 2004) effectively killed PURPA , which had for the prior 25 years required that utilities purchase all of the output of qualifying facilities (including CHP) under long-term contract. The 2005 "Boucher compromise" deemed that PURPA was no longer necessary in...

Full article: http://www.grist.org/article/2011-12-16-us-electricity-20...

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