GOOD

If you're a climate activist—or you just care about clean air and water—today was a pretty darn good day. It wasn't the first day that President Obama took strong climate action, but it was perhaps the most significant. Over his first four years, Obama raised fuel efficiency standards to historic levels and made the single largest investment in clean energy ever, the Stimulus Plan, which contains over $90 billion for green projects. But Obama hadn't gone after the single largest source of carbon pollution, coal, which accounts for about 40 percent of U.S. emissions.

Keep Reading
Articles

The Poison We Never Talk About in School

Textbooks have made coal seem so old-fashioned, so last-century.


The most dangerous substance in the world is barely mentioned in the school curriculum. Coal.

According to the International Energy Agency, burning coal creates more greenhouse gases than any other source—including oil. James Hansen, director of NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies and arguably the world’s foremost climatologist, has called coal "the single greatest threat to civilization and all life on the planet."

Keep Reading
Articles

This Chart Shows When We (Mostly) Stopped Building Coal-Fired Power Plants

Most coal-fired power plants are at least as old as I am. But I never spew mercury into the air.

The Energy Information Administration published a couple of charts that have the energy/environment blogosphere talking. Above, see the amount and source of energy that came online in the United States by year. The ‘50s, ‘60s, ‘70s and ‘80s saw tons of coal plants built. Not a ton after that thanks, as Brad Plumer wrote, to cost, regulation, and advocacy.

Keep Reading
Articles

Activists Paint "Quit Coal" On Chicago Coal Plant Smokestack

Check out this remarkable time-lapse video of activists painting "Quit Coal" on a Chicago smokestack.

Public outcry against Chicago's two toxic coal plants continues to mount. Last month, we covered the "occupation" of the plants in the Little Village and Pilsen neighborhoods by environmental justice and public health advocates. And yesterday, activists flying the Greenpeace banner climbed the 450 foot smokestack at the Fisk plant and painted "Quit Coal" on it.

It's an impressive image, and one that made Bill McKibben's day.

Keep Reading
Articles