Later On

A blog written for those whose interests more or less match mine.

“Clean coal”

with 2 comments

Via ThinkProgress:

Written by LeisureGuy

27 February 2009 at 10:34 am

2 Responses

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  1. Coal provides essentially half our electric power in this country. It is also the cheapest form of energy we have. We are the Saudi Arabia of Coal. It’s also one of the base underpinnings of our technology-driven quality of life and economy.

    I hope you can explain the humor of your clean coal jokes to poorer people when you drive the price of electricity up 400-500% so they can’t afford it or when we have rolling black outs because the wind stops blowing or the sun goes down.

    I can think of a great set of goofy commericals for an overly fast rush into fadish, artifically propped up ‘alternative’ energy that is too unreliable to really assume any significant amount of our energy load. We’ll call it ‘Alternative’ Energy: ‘Robust’, ‘Cheap,’ and ‘Reliable’. Not.

    Philosopher

    27 February 2009 at 12:07 pm

  2. Thanks for the comment. When you count the cost of coal, do you include the externalities (the TVA disaster and its cleanup, the cost of global warming, the cost of mercury pollution in the environment and in seafood, the cost of disease in those who mine the coal, the environmental cost in mountaintop removal and stream pollution, and so on)? Or do you have more narrow focus, counting only the cost in terms of the coal companies’ direct billing?

    The commercial is an attempt to get people—like yourself—to recognize that coal is far, far from a “clean” fuel and help people demand more research and development of alternative sources precisely to make those alternative sources robust, cheap, and reliable.

    LeisureGuy

    27 February 2009 at 12:39 pm


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