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Ahh I thought coal was more efficient, which is why the main industries shifted to it. But this would also have meant that charcoal would have been used by all the poorer folk/industries, given the expenses surrounding coal extraction (as opposed to the easy way of producing charcoal).

But this bit you cite from Wikipedia clearly tells me that I was way off!!

by Alex in Toulouse on Thu Jan 26th, 2006 at 12:50:05 PM EST
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After you take into account the cost of extraction, I wonder whether coal is really more efficient than charcoal.

It's like oil: at some point before it's totally depleted it will take more oil to power the extracion operations than is produced. At that point, oil ceases to be an energy source and becomes an expensive input to the chemical industry.

Remember the plan to build a nuclear power plant in order to get oil out of the Canadian oil sands?

A society committed to the notion that government is always bad will have bad government. And it doesn't have to be that way. — Paul Krugman

by Carrie (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Thu Jan 26th, 2006 at 12:57:14 PM EST
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