Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Natural Gas Penetrates Academia

I read that Pennsylvania State University (Penn State) is going to convert its coal-fired power plant to natural gas to avoid having to retrofit it for upcoming pollution regulations.  This, in the heart of coal country?  Interestingly, the plant hasn't been able to burn Pennsylvania coal for a while because it is not the right grade of coal and student activists seem more pissed at coal (rightly so, I'd say) than the fear of hydraulic fracturing and gas drilling.

As stricter pollution requirements are enacted in the next few years, expect to hear more and more of these announcements.  I read last week that the University of Southern Maine will switch from heavy oil to natural gas to generate power.  The Penn State article above notes that Cornell, Duke and the University of North Carolina are among the universities that have recently announced they will convert to natural gas.

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