15 October 2009


21 October 2009

AEP, the largest producer of electricity in the USA, with a heavy investment in coal, announced the inauguration of the first carbon sequestration installation on one of its coal burning plants in West Virginia. The first phases of the project have cost nearly $13 million, and the pilot project has not even begun to scratch the surface. The USA gets about 50% of its power from coal burning, the largest single source of climate change, as well as a host of very toxic pollutants.

The capture and sequestration of carbon in underground cavities (old mines and wells, primarily) has been touted as the band-aid that will allow continued use of this disastrous fuel. There is no “clean coal.” Let’s examine: a mine has many openings... is there any reason to think that carbon, a gas, will just stay willingly underground? Water seeps out of these mines regularly. If we permit this practice and fill all the holes we can find with carbon, and it starts to leak - which it will - that becomes a time bomb of incalculable consequences. The people that are telling us this will work are the same who stand to make billions from the continued use of this fuel. Are they the ones whose advice we should heed on this?

Read the story.

Coal mining operation in West Virginia
Coal conveyors transport coal between two static points, eliminating the need for human-operated transport. The yellow liquid is either ground water, contaminated with iron pyrite, or a spilled chemical.

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