What will be the dominant energy source in the future? Trends are indicating that much of our energy in the future will come from a source you are already familiar with - coal.
According to U.S. Energy Information Administration forecasts, the consumption of coal worldwide will climb by almost 50 percent during the next 24 years.
In fact, coal may become an important source of hydrogen. Hydrogen is the crucial element in the fuel cells that are now beginning to be used in transportation. These fuel cells will also be a part of all types of power for years to come. They work like a battery, but they do not run down or need recharging. In addition these cells have far lower emissions than any combustion process.
Why is coal in high demand? Current supplies of coal could last the world at least two or three centuries, making it the most abundant energy source. Coal is found all over the world, and of all energy sources, coal is one of the most economical. Human beings have used coal as an energy source throughout their existence.
But unfortunately, if something seems too good to be true, it usually is. So what are coal's major drawbacks?
The only real drawback with coal is its environmental impact. Thankfully, research and new technology are making coal significantly cleaner and better for the environment.
Sulfur dioxide emission rates for U.S. coal-based power plants were cut by more than 75 percent between 1970 and 2000. In addition, nitrous oxide emission rates were cut in half. Mercury emissions from power generation have now been controlled. And soon the emission of greenhouse gases due to coal will be drastically lowered.
Quest Minerals and Mining Corp. (OTC BB: QMMG.OB), is currently acquiring and reopening properties in the southeastern United States that produce clean-burning coal in compliance with Clean Air Act requirements.