Age of King Coal Must End, R.I.P.

pollutionThere is no, and can never be, such a thing as “Clean Coal” [search]. Widespread burying of CO2 which is the basis for “Clean Coal” claims is an industry PR lie that is decades away, if it even ever becomes reality. The truth of the matter is China is burning coal – imports up 51% from Australia in one year – like there is no tomorrow, seriously increasing the likelihood there will not be. The U.S. coal industry is in a mad rush to build some 150 new plants before mandatory carbon caps, carbon taxes or carbon sequestration are put in place. Coal ignited the industrial revolution – accounting for about 60% of human released carbon dioxide to date – and as noted earlier the logical consequence of continuing to burn the 3500 gigatonnes of carbon found in the world's remaining coal reserves will prove deadly. If the world's remaining coal is burned, the planet would be several times past the concentration of carbon dioxide considered able to be adapted to safely. Each of the hundreds of new plants being built by China and the U.S. are without the latest commercially untested carbon sequestration technologies and will spew carbon dioxide directly into the atmosphere for at least 50 years. In the world of nine billion consumers to come, with the condition of the atmosphere in such tatters, the majority of the world's filthy coal reserves must be left in the ground as we transition exclusively to clean renewable energy alternatives. Thankfully, wherever new coal plants are planned protests are emerging [search] including ending bank's coal financing. King Coal, R.I.P., or the Earth and civilization die. Take action as our Australian “Leave the Coal in the Ground” campaign continues.

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8 Responses

  1. Bryan says:

    How about a campaign to leave all oil in the ground as well? I don't know the exact figures, but we can assume that burning crude oil derivatives over the last century has made a substantial contribution to the mess we are in at the moment. Most of the pollution, by the way, has come from the northern hemisphere, and it is the southern hemisphere which is suffering the most from drought right now. I say, let's have a campaign to shut down the North Sea oil fields.
    RESPONSE: Coal was chosen for the campaign because there is so much more of it relative to oil and gas and it has so much carbon per unit. There is some indication we could burn the world's remaining oil and gas in a transition to a sustainable renewable energy future and still have an operable atmosphere, but no way is this the case with coal.

  2. Jay Draiman says:


  3. Jonathan Carroll says:

    Steel production needs huge amounts of coal, and the world will always need steel. It needs to be re-smelted every-time it is re-used. Glass, though, needs merely to be washed. When I was a child, there was a door-to-door delivery service for pop (soda), a mobile shop, and a Rag-n-Bone man, who collected anything and recycled everything (not sure if he got many bones in the 70s, but he still had a horse and cart) as well as the milk delivery. Modern development is when society loses it's soul. I'm quite looking forward to the post-Apocalyptic world, apart from mosquitoes, sea levels, cyno-bacteria, irreversible breakdown of law and order, etc. Please, no more plastic in the gyres!

  4. Paul says:
    Its good to see some protests emerging but the political climate in China is vastly different than our own. At the recent economic conference in Asia there was some discussion of reducing carbon emissions etc, but it seems they have an exceptionally long way to go before even considering such matters.

  5. Casey Seidenberg says:

    Energy independence should be something we put on our national agenda for the coming year.
    Next week Bush is going to deliver his State of the Union address. We want him to get serious about energy independance this year.
    We have heard his plan for Iraq. Let’s try to influence his plan on the environment by gathering 500,000 signatures stating that we want America to invest in renewable energy and address climate change

  6. Great site and articles.
    I am renovating my farmhouse in Catalunya and I
    plan to incorate solar, wind and waterpower.
    You can pick up very good value windturbines on ebay of all places and the price can only drop further with more demand.

  7. david says:

    i totally agree with all of u and hope that poverty is no more

  8. Solar John says:

    I think the public in general is too accepting of the “Clean Coal” myth. It sounds great, but it's total BS. I've written more, here:

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