One of my favorite sources of interesting commentary on the energy business is Energy Outlook. It has been on my blogroll for a long time. Here is the author’s profile:
Geoffrey Styles is an energy and strategy consultant specializing in the application of scenario thinking for Fortune 500 companies and other clients. In his corporate career, he focused on the global oil refining, marketing and alternative energy businesses and has held senior positions in alliance management, planning, supply & distribution, and price risk management. He has published articles on energy security and alternative energy and advised NASA on solar power. He has an MBA from Berkeley’s Haas School and a B.S. in Chemical Engineering from U.C. Davis.
Geoff has a great energy industry background and writes about a variety of thought provoking topics.
Here is a quote from his July 17, 2007 entry titled Rethinking Nuclear:
What if nuclear power hadn’t been discovered before World War II, and instead had emerged from the laboratory only a few years ago? How might we consider exploiting an energy source with its properties today, without the baggage of the last sixty-plus years? Is it pre-determined that the only way to tap the energy of the atom is in 1,000 MW increments? The record of the US nuclear naval propulsion program suggests otherwise. Consider the difference between coal-fired power plants and those burning natural gas. There are important economies of scale in the transportation and handling of coal, and in the sizing of boilers, that create a strong bias towards large plants. In contrast, gas-fired power comes in a wide variety of sizes, from under 100 kW to hundreds of MW, at least in part because the fuel infrastructure is so simple. So is nuclear power more like coal or gas in this regard?