You would think energy producers would always be looking for ways to lessen the costs and increase the reliability of power for their customers. This is not the case, however, with several American energy producers who are now taking advantage of the climate scare to try to force their customers to pay more. They are doing this through unnecessary conversions away from dependable, inexpensive coal-fired electricity generation to unreliable and costly wind and solar power. The Wisconsin-based utility, Alliant Energy, which provides electricity to about 960,000 customers in Wisconsin and Iowa, is a case in point.
The combustion of coal in coal-fired boilers produces unburned residues. These residues include bottom ash, also known as clinker ash, which exists at the bottom of the boiler. Bottom ash generally accounts for less than the quarter of the total ash production. This ash must be collected and disposed of owing to adverse environmental and health concerns.