Remember Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, when the Queen’s poisoned apple causes Snow White to fall into a deep sleep until her prince comes to kiss her? If Congressmen Henry Waxman (D-CA) and Edward Markey (D-MA) have their way, coal-fired power plants will have a similar fate until they can be built with carbon capture and storage.
Tuesday the Congressmen introduced legislation that would put a moratorium on “uncontrolled power plants.” As if Wall Street‘s hesitance to finance coal plants and the looming Lieberman-Warner climate legislation isn’t a big enough hint, Waxman and Markey are hoping to send the very clear signal that regulation is on its way.
Sierra Club national coal campaign director Bruce Niles said the Waxman-Markey legislation would challenge electric utility companies into following through on their multimillion-dollar commercial campaign aimed at promoting “clean” coal technologies. “This bill holds them to their rhetoric and will demonstrate whether there is any truth behind the industry’s slick public relations campaign,” he said.
Again, I find it ironic how much money the industry dumps into PR and not, well, the best way to generate electricity.
Back on topic… the bill proposes to ban coal plants that cannot capture and store 85 percent of their emissions and would stay in place until either the EPA (riiight) or Congress enacts global warming policy.
Though Waxman and Markey are two of the top seats on the House Energy and Commerce Committee, I doubt this legislation will make it very far. Perhaps if it did, it could kick Congress into gear to discuss global warming legislation (at this point, the Lieberman-Warner bill) and move it through quicker so that the moratorium wouldn’t last as long. But since when has common sense and a clear end goal ever accomplished much in politics?
– Kari M.