Reality sets in for the coal industry

What is the U.S government doing to stop air pollution?

Reality sets in for the coal industry

Postby Wilberforce » Fri Feb 23, 2018 7:46 pm

Reality sets in for the coal industry: Trump is powerless to save it
Coal plants now shutting down faster under Trump than Obama.

Joe Romm
Feb 22, 2018, 1:03 pm
President Trump campaigned on a pledge to end the supposed “war on coal” that he claimed President Obama had been waging. But the reality is that more coal capacity was retired in the first 45 days of 2018 than in each of the first three years of the Obama administration.

In fact, Bloomberg New Energy Finance reported last week in its 2018 Sustainable Energy in America Factbook that by the end of last year, coal plant owners “had announced 12.5GW of planned retirements for 2018, foreshadowing the largest year for coal decommissioning since the 15GW of retirements in 2015.”

Mary Anne Hitt, Director of Sierra Club’s Beyond Coal campaign, explained this week that “a coal plant has retired every 16 days since Trump was elected.” That’s the same pace as during the Obama administration’s full eight years, but much faster than the pace during Obama’s first term.

So do those numbers mean Trump is also waging a war on coal?

The truth is there never was a “war on coal.” There’s been two big battles, though. The first is an economic battle in the marketplace, where low cost renewables, natural gas, and energy efficiency became so cheap that costly and inflexible coal (and nuclear) plants simply could not compete.

Wind, solar power, and batteries have been coming down in price so fast that building new renewables is now cheaper than just running old coal plants.

New Colorado wind farms with batteries are now cheaper than running old coal plants

The second battle is for public health, fought by state and federal governments along with local activists and the Sierra Club, to reduce some of the most dangerous and toxic air pollutants, a lot of which come from coal plants. Call it a “war on air pollution” or a “war to save lives.”

Even Trump’s own Environmental Protection Agency put out an analysis last year concluding that its effort to undo Obama’s Clean Power Plan could kill some 100,000 Americans over the next few decades.

But it’s really economics that is driving the shift away from coal. And no matter how many public health protections the Trump administration undoes, they can’t change the fact that existing coal plants are albatrosses. Solar and wind power plants are so cheap that last year they beat natural gas in the race to replace dirty, costly coal.

If there had ever been a war on coal, then the numbers suggest Trump is still waging it. But in fact coal wasn’t doomed by politics, but by the desire for cheap power and clean air.

source
https://thinkprogress.org/coal-plants-n ... 9d4554ec0/

This is how coal dies — super cheap renewables plus battery storage
New Colorado wind farms with batteries are now cheaper than running old coal plants
https://thinkprogress.org/colorado-wind ... 82b91a543/

Energy experts give Trump the hard truth: You can’t bring coal back
Coal wasn’t killed by a political “war”?—?cheap renewables and fracked gas were the culprits.
https://thinkprogress.org/coal-wont-reb ... a78745b77/
• The Surgeon General has determined that there is no safe level of exposure to ambient smoke!

• If you smell even a subtle odor of smoke, you are being exposed to poisonous and carcinogenic chemical compounds!

• Even a brief exposure to smoke raises blood pressure, (no matter what your state of health) and can cause blood clotting, stroke, or heart attack in vulnerable people. Even children experience elevated blood pressure when exposed to smoke!

• Since smoke drastically weakens the lungs' immune system, avoiding smoke is one of the best ways to prevent colds, flu, bronchitis, or risk of an even more serious respiratory illness, such as pneumonia or tuberculosis! Does your child have the flu? Chances are they have been exposed to ambient smoke!
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