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Posts Tagged ‘coal’

Twenty Years of Open Records Attacks

University of Minnesota environmental scientist Deborah Swackhamer studied toxaphene, a chemical once considered a promising replacement for DDT but eventually found to be quite toxic. But when Swackhamer joined a group of researchers exploring why there might be unusual concentrations of the chemical in the Great Lakes, the university received the largest open records request ever made in Minnesota. Read More

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President’s Budget Helps Create New Opportunities for Coal Communities

Yesterday was a big day for policy geeks in Washington, DC—the annual release of the President’s proposed federal budget for next year. As reporters and analysts alike pore over the numbers and talking heads comment on the political headwinds, it’s clear that addressing climate change remains a major part of the President’s agenda. It’s also worth emphasizing that the president is making a coordinated and focused effort to invest in coal mining communities. Here’s how. Read More

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Seeking Stories of Abuse of Open Records Laws

Have you or your university or government colleagues been targeted with intrusive federal or state Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests? If so, I’d like to hear from you. Read More

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The Proposed Bailout for Ohio’s Coal Plants: A Bad Idea Any Way You Look at It

Ohio’s three biggest electricity providers are asking the state to approve a bailout plan that would force Ohioans to pay hundreds of millions of dollars in extra charges to keep some of the nation’s oldest, dirtiest, and least efficient power plants operating. If the proposals are approved, electricity costs for Ohioans will rise as consumers are forced to pay extra to maintain the Buckeye State’s risky over-reliance on coal. Read More

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Carbon Capture, Water, and the U.S.-China Climate Agreement

The just-announced U.S.-China climate agreement is reason to celebrate—it’s a, as UCS’s Ken Kimmell puts it, “truly historic agreement” and “a welcome breakthrough.” For those with an interest in energy-water connections and collisions, the agreement commits both countries to a project focused on reducing the negative water implications of carbon capture and storage (CCS). Here’s why we’re even talking about water around CCS, and what this accord says about that the issue. Read More

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Coal, Carbon, and Compliance: Why Pennsylvania’s EPA Regulations Bill Isn’t the End of the Ballgame

Pennsylvania’s legislature finished off its fall session with a bill on the EPA’s Clean Power Plan. At a time when climate leadership, not obstructionism, is called for, it’s no step forward. But it’s not the step backward that it might have been. Here’s why. Read More

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An Honest Conversation about Hardworking Coal Miners

I applaud David Roberts over at Grist for elevating a very interesting and timely conversation on worker transition for coal miners. On Monday he argued that the Democratic Party should simply cede Coal Country as collateral damage from the culture war, and instead focus on its base of environmentally minded liberals. And yesterday, in response to many tweets and comments, his blog asked the question, Should the Feds Bail Out Coal Miners? While I agree with many of his arguments, I’d have to disagree with his conclusion (in short, “no”) and offer some ideas about why protecting our coal workers is critical to successfully solving the climate problem. Read More

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Climate, Carbon, and Clarity

Guest Bogger

Christopher Gambino, Ph.D. Candidate
Nitrogen Systems: Policy-oriented Integrated Research and Education (NSPIRE) IGERT Fellow, Washington State University

Pullman, WA

I’m as passionate as anyone about the reality of climate change (no really, it’s real) and the need to adapt now to its threats and alleviate the major drivers. Yet, as our nation and its leaders narrow the debate around one particular cause, vital sign, metric, or goal, we fall short in truly protecting and preserving our world for future generations. Read More

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The Economist Ignores Reality, Highlights Flawed Renewable Energy Study

A recent article in The Economist covers a study comparing the costs of solar, wind, hydro, nuclear, and natural gas. Alas, the study starts with a fundamental misunderstanding of how our electricity system works, and goes  downhill from there. And The Economist’s attention unfortunately helps to perpetuate those errors. Here are five examples of what went wrong. Read More

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Me to the EPA: Increase Renewables, Limit Carbon, and Protect Coal Miners

Today I testified at the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) public hearing in Washington, DC on the proposed carbon standard for existing power plants. My prepared remarks are below. Read More

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