Clinton Crackel, a professional in nuclear energy and fossil fuels: Coal is a valuable national resource, capable of providing much more than simply fuel for coal-fired power plants. It is also a source for rare earths, synthetic liquid fuel, synthetic gas, metallurgical coke, and contains numerous metals including uranium and thorium.
Clinton Crackel, a professional in nuclear energy and fossil fuels: Rare earth elements are utilized in both civilian and military technologies. China became the world's principal producer or rare earths in the 1990s. By selling at very low prices, it became the source for over 95% of world rare earth production by 2000, even though the pollution to the environment around the production facilities is horrendous. By encouraging production of rare earth elements in the United States, we can eliminate dependence on foreign sources for very important national security materials and do a better job for the environment. It doesn't have to be, it shouldn't be always and only about the bottom line of price, ignoring horrific labor conditions and environmental destruction in far off lands.
Clinton Crackel, Co-founder and Co-chairman Nuclear Fuels Reprocessing Coalition: The Fischer-Tropsch process was developed in Germany in 1925 as means to convert coal into synthetic fuel for use in motorized vehicles. During World War II this process accounted for approximately 9% of the total German production of fuel and 25% for automobiles. In 2012, Princeton University researchers found the United States could eliminate the need for crude oil by substituting it with synthetic fuels (Sullivan, John. "Synthetic fuels could eliminate entire U.S. need for crude oil, create 'new economy'." News at Princeton. N.p., 27 Nov. 2012. Web.). At least we could eliminate our dependence on foreign oil by substituting it with the Fischer-Tropsch coal-to-liquid (CTL) synthetic fuel process in order to create jobs and revive the American coal industry that has been stymied by harsh environmental and political constraints.
Clinton Crackel, Co-founder and Co-chairman Nuclear Fuels Reprocessing Coalition: Too many crude oil extraction and refining operations are susceptible to recurring outages and damages caused by hurricanes because of their location in the Gulf states. At least 25% of our refining capacity was incapacitated by Hurricane Harvey. Yet, we had no suitable substitute for the loss of so much crude oil-based fuel. The losses of so much refining capacity, even for a short period of time, can lead to considerable price spikes and dramatic shortages of jet fuel, gasoline and diesel fuel. In addition to Sasol, at least two other petroleum companies, Shell and ExxonMobile, have been interested in the Fischer-Tropsch coal to liquid synthetic fuel process in the past. This process is the mainstay of Sasol's synthetic fuel production in South Africa.