Coal to oil and gas

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Hopper Cars:

Hopper cars are open-topped cars with high sides and ends. Their bottom has hoppers or chutes that can be opened. The grain, flour, or cement would fall down into storage bins beneath the cars. This makes for quick unloading because the engine usually pulls about 100 hopper cars when delivering coal to the ship yards.
If you look at the chart below there are many different sizes of these hopper cars, and each is capable of carrying different amounts of coal or whatever else you might want to transport.

30 TONS B 4½ x 8 25,750 103,000 154,500 206,000
40 TONS C 5 x 9 35,500 142,000 213,000 284,000
50 TONS D 5½ x 10 44,250 177,000 265,500 354,000
70 TONS E 6 x 11 55,000 220,000 330,000 440,000
100 TONS F 6½ x 12 65,750 263,000 394,500 526,000
* 71,500 286,000 429,000 572,000
125 TONS G 7 x 12 78,750 315,000 472,500 630,000

The reason for the hopper car lesson will become more apparent as we continue along in this article. I live in Williamsburg and first started looking into the coal industry after sitting at a train intersection on a daily basis. The thing that caught my attention was there were 100 of these hopper cars attached to one engine. I know because I counted them at least once a day.

The second thing I noticed was the cars were filled with coal and the reason I know this is because the coal was filled to over capacity and about a foot higher than the sides of hopper cars.
This train with 100 hopper cars filled with coal would go past our house once every hour. So if you look at the chart above and pick the smallest car they make, it holds 30 ton . Although I have not measured the ones that I seen I would bet they were the 50 ton cars. So the point is if you take 100 cars and multiply them by the smallest car it totals to be 3000 tons. But wait that is an hour so you multiply 3000 tons times 24 hours in a day and now you get 72000 tons a day 365 days a year.

But wait it even gets worse, they now are running 3 of these trains a day at a total of 226,000 an hour and 5,024,000 every single day of the week. This started to concern me as to where all our fuel was going. Just one hour of this amount of coal would make a lot of fuel oil.
After a small amount of investigation I finally found out where the cars with our fuel coal were being unloaded. It was at the shipping yard in Norfolk Va, and there was a mountain of it. They had five of the biggest freighters I have ever seen and they were being loaded with our fuel coal. I could not find out which country was buying up all our coal but I could take a good guess.

The reason I am bring this up is twofold. One is we are getting raped by other countries on oil prices. You hear them say it is a supply and demand issue and you would really have to be stupid to believe that one. When we cut back on our usage in this country they cut production of the oil and then we have a false created shortage. So if they would keep up producing when demand goes down we would have a surplus. Some might say that creating a shortage is good business but I call it what it is and that is price gouging at the least.

We have been taking a beating for the last 20 years of paying higher prices on fuel. We tried to put oil wells in the gulf and they would not let us because of the environmentalist, but did you know that Cuba paid china to put 14 oil wells in our golf and are stealing our own oil. We also have the Alaskan pipe line and most of that is being shipped to Japan or some other country. Why is that? Well if we bought our own oil they would have to give it to us at a much lower cost and the big oil companies overseas would not be bankrupt us

So the bottom line is if we want to save fuel and money we need to keep our coal and make fuel oil out of it and also to stop shipping our own oil to other countries.

There are many companies and homes that burn our own coal saving fuel oil. Many have started switching over to fuel oil because of the price of coal going up. This is bad because we then have to import more fuel oil. Making this country poorer and there's richer.
We are " told " that the cost to turn coal to fuel oil is expensive ( they claim 5.00 a gallon if you want to believe it) but if we have to pay a little more for fuel wouldn't it be better to make it here? We would have an added benefit by putting people to work making fuel, selling a new product and all that money that is made would stay in the USA instead of going to foreign countries.

We need to sell our products to American's at an affordable price, and if we do that we will have our products and our money making American more independent like our founding Fathers intended it to be.

Update -- was over at a mini golf course with my grandaughter the other day and the train was really close to where we were standing and where i was i could look down into the train so i put a video on the website so you could see it for yourself at in the article section. Also instead of the cars being 8ft you will be able to see they were really 40 ft which increases the amount of coal be transported substantially.

If you are interested in keeping our environment cleand and saving fuel the check out for more info.

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