40 years ago in Chemistry in Britain

40 years ago in Chemistry in Britain

As new gas finds in the North Sea are announced daily, the question of utilisation is becoming an important issue. Politically it would undoubtedly be most popular to use the new energy source for domestic purposes, but would this be the best or the most effective course of action? Not according to the Chemical Industries Association, who have published a report of a working party under the chairmanship of Mr W A M Edwards of ICI. 

The report argues that the alterations necessary for household appliances would cost a very large sum of money and take several years to accomplish. In addition, gas supplies for the domestic market experience load factor variations of around 50 per cent. On the other hand, the chemical industry could use about 830 million cubic feet of gas per day for synthesis (ammonia, alcohols, acetylene etc), processing and fuel applications, offering a more economical utilisation of resources than domestic uses.  

20 years ago in Chemistry in Britain

Northern Ireland’s sizeable resources of lignite (brown coal) are being considered as a fuel for power stations. Deposits of over 500 Mtonnes of lignite have been explored at Crumlin in County Antrim and there are other deposits at sites in East Tyrone. 

Ed: 20 years later with effective lobbying by  Just say no to lignite campaigners, and others, no lignite mining has yet been permitted in Northern Ireland, either in the Crumlin or Ballymoney areas. An adjournment debate on the subject took place in the Northern Ireland Assembly on 3 July this year.