Water Power Versus Steam Power

Water Power Versus Steam Power

“The idea until recently quite prevalent, that, because the water which represented the fuel was

free, the cost of power was nothing and that a gold mine and a water power were synonymous, has received many ‘a rude shock,’” says a writer in a recent number of Scribner’s Magazine. “In any kind of manufacture,” he continues, “we have two classes of charges which make up the cost of the product. The first, known as the fixed charges—interest, depreciation, insurance and taxes—is independent of the output. The second. the operating expenses, such as fuel, salaries, repairs, etc., is in some measure directly proportional to the quantity of goods manufactured. If the fuel is free, as in a water power, the other items all remain, and the power cost is only fractionally reduced. Again, if, as is often the case in a water power plant, the investment per horsepower of capacity is several times that of the steam plant it may happen that the fixed charges are increased more than the operating expenses are reduced, and thus the electric power generated by the water actually’ costs more than a steam plant. When the long and expensive transmission lines and the necessary steam auxiliary stations are included, water power is not necessarily a cheap source of supply. In most cases, however, where a sufficient quantity of water is available at all times, hydro-electric power is the cheapest in the world.”

ATTACKING WHITE STREET FIRE WITH WATER TOWER AT CORNER OF WEST BROADWAY, NEW YORK.

Buffalo, N. Y., is a fire center again, for the first time in many months. Three large fires have occurred within a week. On May 28 a $115,000 fire damaged the Warren lubricating works $75,000, N. B. Falls lubricating works $5,090, Girard Chemical Company $5,000, F. E. Harris & Co., owners of buildings $30,000. On May 29 the Law Exchangc and various tenants suffered $50,000 loss, largely on building, which is owned by H. M. Loud’s Sons Co.. of Au Sable, Mich. On May 30 the Modern Laundry building was burned; loss, $50,000,

FIGHTING WHITE STREET FIRE FROM ROOF, NEW YORK.

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