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1997-11-01 15:27:57


If the Trains Can't Deliver Coal to Power Generation Stations



Rick Cowles put this on his site:

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The single most important element of ensuring that fossil plants stay online is ensuring that the supply lines for fuel delivery remain intact. Most fossil generation facilities have from 1 to 3 weeks of reserve fuel storage onhand at any given time, whether the fuel is coal or petroleum based. This reserve allows for minor disruptions of fuel supply lines. Very close to my own home (one block down the road), a 100 car freight train passes through town every single morning between 7AM and 8AM, 7 days a week, with coal shipments for the local coal fired co-generation plant.

In the transportation industry, particularly the railroads, the rolling of calendars to 01/01/2000 has the potential to be much more than just a 'minor disruption' of service. Rail car movement and inventory is tracked by date sensitive computer programs. Rail switching is no longer done manually, but is, in a lot of instances, controlled by antiquated date sensitive computers and embedded controls.


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