Trump, Here’s The Right Way To Help Excoalminers

“the American arm of Goldwind, a Chinese wind-turbine manufacturer, announced the free training program. More than a century ago, Carbon County was home to the first coal mine in Wyoming. Soon, it will be the site of a new wind farm with hundreds of Goldwind-supplied turbines.
 
Goldwind sees the ex-miners as a font of the sort of technical knowledge—mechanical and electrical engineering, on par—with the experience of working in difficult conditions required to run and maintain a wind farm. Adapting coal-mining skills to wind farming seemed a natural fit. “If we can tap into that market and also help out folks that might be experiencing some challenges in the workforce today, I think that it can be a win-win situation,””
 
See US coal miners are training to be wind farm technicians, thanks to Goldwind, a Chinese wind turbine manufacturer
Yep, education, not political slogans, is the answer. Excoalminers don’t have to stick to coal mining. They can do other things. Keeping them poor and in the dark in order to further your political ambitions is a cruel joke. Wind/solar are growth industries. Why shouldn’t the poor/dispossessed in USA have opportunity rather than more poverty on their horizons?

About Robert Pogson

I am a retired teacher in Canada. I taught in the subject areas where I have worked for almost forty years: maths, physics, chemistry and computers. I love hunting, fishing, picking berries and mushrooms, too.

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13 Responses to Trump, Here’s The Right Way To Help Excoalminers

  1. Grece says:

    Coal mining can continue, albeit in a exporting capacity Robert. We could even import coal to Canada!

  2. FooBar wrote, ” The way to HELP former coal miners is to put them back to work mining coal. Coal is a vital and plentiful energy source, and there is no downside.”

    Is that the way to help buggy drivers, knitters, and others whose jobs are obsolete? Nope. Retrain or retire them on a pension, but don’t send them back to do useless work. Coal-mining will not make a comeback even if Trump orders all government departments to shun all forms of energy except coal. The reason is that nowadays one coal-miner can do the work a hundred used to do thanks to automation and giant equipment. Many of the old underground mines are just too small for that much automation. Whatever coal is needed Wyoming can provide, and they are reducing staff.

    On top of the global warming coal is more expensive to ship. One has to make a slurry to use a pipeline and then the stuff is wet… It just costs more to obtain and ship and burn than natural gas, the fossil upstart. OTOH, wind and solar are just about everywhere and it comes to us at no charge. Build the plant and it hums for decades with a lot less labour.

    There is no advantage to the USAian economy to rely on coal or to put thousands to work digging it up. Coal as carbon is still very useful in refining but as an energy source it’s silly. Global warming is not the reason coal is dying. It’s just the last nail in the coffin.

  3. I’m glad President Trump doesn’t listen to left-wing morons like you. The way to HELP former coal miners is to put them back to work mining coal. Coal is a vital and plentiful energy source, and there is no downside. Anyone who believes that burning coal causes global warming is a moron and needs to have their head examined.

  4. ram, for me, wind is just diversification, taking advantage of windy days and nights. It’s not long term because I can’t build a tower and my windbreak will grow taller over a decade.

  5. Grece wrote, “When was the last time you worked on a wind-turbine Robert, really?”

    About 1957, I found parts of a wind-generator on our farm and set it up in a stiff breeze from the south adjacent to a pasture. That wooden blade really spun. It’s a wonder I wasn’t hacked to death… In those days, access to the grid was new. Previously, folks charged batteries using such generators for local power for radios and lights. I think it was about 1947 that rural electrification happened in our area. A neighbour had a windmill for pumping water for cattle. Wind is a very useful source of energy. On my property, we often have stiff winds even at night so a small windmill would be a useful addition to a solar array. Lots of neighbours have ornamental windmills. I figure a 400-1000W windmill would not be an issue. I’m thinking to keep an 8-24 kWh NiFe battery charged so that I can top up or charge my Solo a little more cheaply. Break-even, compared to gasoline for the Lexus would be 3-5 years, and solar panels are rated for ~25 years. NiFe batteries last longer than that.

  6. Grece says:

    There is no subsidy here in Manitoba and the wind company is thriving.

    Robert, we were discussing the United States, not flipping Canada.

    Day by day, you remind me of Fifi.

    You saw all them windmills turning, but were they exporting power? How could you tell Robert?

    Can you see electrical current now?

    In fact, they could be taking power from the grid and operating in reverse, but no, you like most average ignorant folks these days, automatically assume things.

    When was the last time you worked on a wind-turbine Robert, really?

  7. Grece wrote, “Why should the government subsidize wind-energy if it is so good?”

    There is no subsidy here in Manitoba and the wind company is thriving. Meanwhile, Trump is promising to cut taxes to make USA competitive. I just passed through one windfarm a couple of weeks ago and saw only one mill not turning.

  8. Grece says:

    Well, lets see here. Do we believe the ramblings of two nincompoops, or do we realize the failings of thousands of wind turbines lying idle in California’s Altamont Pass, Tehachapin, and San Gorgonio.

    All one has to do is observe that 25% of current wind-turbine companies are bankrupt, or in the process of going bankrupt. If the Production Tax Credit is withdrawn, the entire industry fails. Pretty bad commercial entities have to be paid to generate electricity, free-markets are a much better model, a model that Robert strongly disapproves of and calls it a monopoly.

    Why should the government subsidize wind-energy if it is so good?

    You decide.

  9. Grece wrote, “Wind farms do not generate electricity on any commercially competitive level. The only reason that wind farms can survive is through government subsidy”.

    Does Grece actually believe this crap? Wind farms can last 20-25 years with only occasional maintenance. The return on investment is pretty good.

    Manitoba:Pattern Energy has a portfolio of 18 wind power facilities, including one we have agreed to acquire. Of these 18 facilities, 17 are in operations and one is under construction. Each of our facilities has contracted to sell all or a majority of its output pursuant to a long-term, fixed-price power sale agreement with a creditworthy counterparty.”

    Call that a subsidy? It sure looks like a paying proposition to me. Total cost of construction $330million and revenue of $18 million per annum ramping 2.5% per annum.

  10. oiaohm says:

    Wind farms do not generate electricity on any commercially competitive level. The only reason that wind farms can survive is through government subsidy, which is … stolen from the taxpayer and funneled into the pockets of rent-seeking businessmen.
    This is bull and then you have to ask why Wind farms are given subsity.
    https://cleantechnica.com/2016/12/25/cost-of-solar-power-vs-cost-of-wind-power-coal-nuclear-natural-gas/
    Its cheaper over the long term to power generate with Wind than it is with Coal or nuclear. Upfront costs are a little higher with wind long term costs a lot lower you don’t have contamination clean up problems.
    https://c1cleantechnicacom-wpengine.netdna-ssl.com/files/2016/12/solar-energy-costs-wind-energy-costs-LCOE-Lazard.png
    Yes that is the no subsidy cost. Even allowing for loses from hydro-storage wind with hydro storage beats nuclear and runs level or better than coal.

    For cost in your non renewable usage you want to be seeing https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Combined_cycle
    Of course a combind cycle plant can be running in biogas and non renewable gas mixtures.

    So you after a cost effective systems. Wind, Hydro and gas combined cycle should be all your power plants. Everything else is more expensive or lacking durability.

    Grece I serous-ally do ask why wind still gets subsidy. The operating TCO says they don’t need it. Subsidy was required at the start when they were design more and more cost effective ways to build wind turbines. Today construction cost of wind turbines the subsidy is no longer needed. Best solution now is to restrict new construction of coal and nuclear plants due to not being cost effective.

    I would set a cost effective line of 78 dollar or lower per Mwh. This would allow some coal plants but a large percentage are above the 78 dollar mark and should be replaced with something more cost effective. So the max legal allowed payment per megawatt is 78 dollar if you cannot work out how to run your plant under that you need to go out of business.

    Capping max payable price would be more suitable than a subsidy at this stage.

  11. Grece says:

    Wind farms do not generate electricity on any commercially competitive level. The only reason that wind farms can survive is through government subsidy, which is … stolen from the taxpayer and funneled into the pockets of rent-seeking businessmen.

    It’s a Ponzi scheme, promoted as a way to siphon funds from those taxpayers into the pockets of investment managers.

    Once those taxpayer funds are withdrawn, the real economics of maintaining these expensive monstrosities are so overpoweringly negative that they are left to rot.

  12. Ivan says:

    Keeping them poor and in the dark in order to further your political ambitions

    What I love most about liberals, they only give a shit about poor people when it suits their political agenda.

    🖕

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