Ari Berman’s must-read article “The Dirt on Clean Coal” upholds The Nation’s proud reputation for investigative reporting which separates it from most mainstream outlets, posing relevant questions and actually attempting to find answers to them.
Berman asks the critical, overlooked question of the day, “Can the same people who told us that global warming didn’t exist–or that it was a good thing–suddenly be trusted to help solve the climate crisis?”
As you might guess, the answer is a resounding “no.”
Berman details how the coal industry – through its $40 million Astroturf campaign by the front group “American Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity” – is working feverishly to fight Congressional efforts to limit greenhouse gas emissions, hoping to ensure that the world’s coal supplies – and the climate – continue to burn for decades to come.
Tracing the long history of energy industry propaganda, Berman shows how the P.R. machine behind the coal industry’s big lie hasn’t changed at all. “Although the message on coal has changed, many of the actors–and their actions–remain the same.”
Reminding readers that, “of the country’s 616 coal plants, none are carbon-free or close to it,” Berman even gets a “clean coal” expert to admit that it’s all a farce. Ted Venners, the founder of Evergreen Energy – a Colorado-based company that refines dirty coal into slightly less dirty coal – tells Berman that “even after the process of cleaning coal, it’s not clean.”
“Clean coal,” Venners admits, “is an oxymoron.”
Straight from the horse’s mouth.
Read Berman’s article here: “The Dirt on Clean Coal”