Coal

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Solar swells as coal collapses: Analysis shows rapid shift to renewables underway

The nation’s transition from dirty to renewable energy is “nearing exponential growth”—a shift set to usher in “transformative” impacts within a handful of years. So declares the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis (IEEFA) in its “U.S. Power Sector Outlook 2021” report released Wednesday. By Andrea Germanos Common Dreams Among the key findings (pdf) are that […]

April 5th

Congress investigating biggest scam ever: “Clean coal” that actually increased pollution

Following the emergence of evidence that power plants using a chemically treated coal—purportedly designed to reduce smog—generated more smokestack pollution not less, the Government Accountability Office has reportedly launched a congressional probe of the “refined coal” tax credit program that yields at least $1 billion per year for U.S. corporations. By Kenny Stancil Common Dreams With the […]

March 16th

Cancel all coal projects to have fighting chance against climate crisis, says UN chief

Emphasizing that the world still has a “fighting chance” to limit global warming with immediate and ambitious climate action, United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres on Tuesday urged governments and the private sector to cancel all planned coal projects, cease financing for coal-fired power plants, and opt instead to support a just transition by investing in renewable […]

March 13th

How extractive industries manage to carry on harming the planet

Around the globe, concern is mounting about the unfolding climate and ecological catastrophe. Yet the extraction of natural resources through mining and energy projects continues on a large scale, with disastrous environmental consequences. By Judith Verweijen, University of Sheffield and Alexander Dunlap, University of Oslo The Conversation To understand how this is possible, one place […]

March 5th

Cumbria coal mine could usher in a net-zero-compliant fossil fuel industry – or prove it was always a fantasy

West Cumbria suffered a “once-in-a-thousand-year” flood in 2009. And then again in 2015. And 2019. No, it’s not that meteorologists can’t count. Climate change is increasing the risk of precisely the kind of intense downpours that triggered these floods, so that once-freak weather events now happen far more regularly. By Myles Allen, University of Oxford […]

February 10th

Utilities are making climate pledges. But here’s the dirty truth.

While the climate crisis is thankfully front and center for the new Biden administration, most utilities have only given it lip service over the last four years, and there have been few people in positions of power to hold them accountable to the long-term consequences of their failure to take meaningful steps to curb their […]

February 9th

Despite everything, 2020 was a great year for moving beyond coal

It’s fair to say that 2020 was a grueling year with more than its share of challenges, but the progress the Sierra Club’s Beyond Coal campaign made in spite of that should make us doubly optimistic about the future. By Mary Ann Hitt Sierra Club Over the past year, the Beyond Coal campaign has: Supported […]

December 28th

Trump EPA’s coal regulations may mean more covid-19 deaths

On Monday, the Environmental Protection Agency declined to put in place stricter regulations on coal. This is despite the evolving evidence that air pollution is correlated with worse Covid-19 outcomes. Ecological studies have shown that even a small increase in exposure to particulate matter of 1 µg/m3 (PM2.5) in the air leads to an 8% increase in Covid-related mortality. […]

December 15th

The Paris Agreement 5 years on: big coal exporters like Australia face a reckoning

On Saturday, more than 70 global leaders came together at the UN’s Climate Ambition Summit, marking the fifth anniversary of the Paris Agreement. Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison was denied a speaking slot, in recognition of Australia’s failure to set meaningful climate commitments. Meanwhile, the European Union and the UK committed to reduce domestic emissions […]

December 14th

White lady who said “coal ended slavery” wants public money to build coal plants in Africa

The fossil fuel industry has never been shy about using people of color as human shields against criticisms, for example Peabody Energy’s exploitation of the 2014 Ebola outbreak to push its coal as a cure for poverty and disease. Last week in the LA Times, Sammy Roth explored how gas companies are continuing the rich tradition of fossil fuel companies […]

December 3rd

Three more climate-killing coal plants are shutting down!

We’re announcing retiring coal plants #332, 333, and 334 in the US! After years of advocacy by The Sierra Club & partners, Talen Energy will retire the Brandon Shores and Wagner plants in MD and Montour in PA, and will also build 1 GW of solar & storage. By Mary Ann Hitt The Sierra Club […]

November 16th

Dr. James Hansen: The judicial pillar vs Montana coal

Making a democracy work is not easy.  But it is worth the effort. Dysfunction and incompetence of the legislative and executive branches of the United States national government are at shocking heights.  Short-term improvements are possible via upcoming elections, but long-term solution almost surely requires an approach that explicitly addresses the present extreme polarization of […]

October 17th