At a campaign stop today in Maumee, OH, Sen. Joe Biden (D-DE) talked to Carolyn Auwaerter, a young 1Sky campaigner, about energy policy. Questioned about his campaign’s support for “clean coal,” Biden vigorously defended his record in favor of renewable energy, and outlined what he sees as the key challenge: developing carbon capture and sequestration technology (which he calls “clean coal”) to limit the pollution from China’s rapidly increasing fleet of coal plants. In his words, captured on video by the Energy Action Coalition:
No coal plants here in America. Build them, if they’re going to build them over there make ’em clean because they’re killing you.
Both 1Sky and the Energy Action Coalition are opposed to the development of new coal-fired power plants. Energy Action Coalition is running Power Vote, a national youth based campaign to get 1,000,000 youth voters voting for clean energy this election season. They are also working with Green For All and the Center for American Progress on the Green Jobs Now Day of Action, this September 27.
AUWAERTER: Senator, Senator, wind and solar are flourishing here in Ohio, so why are you supporting clean coal?
BIDEN: Say that again? I didn’t hear what you said.
AUWAERTER: Wind and solar are flourishing here in Ohio, so why are you supporting clean coal?
BIDEN: We’re not supporting “clean coal.” Guess what. China’s building two every week. Two dirty coal plants. And it’s polluting the United States. It’s causing people to die.
AUWAERTER: So will you support wind and solar?
BIDEN: Absolutely. Before anybody did. The first guy to introduce a global warming bill is me, 22 years ago. The first guy to support solar energy is me, 26 years ago. It came out of Delaware. But guess what. China is burning three hundred years of bad coal unless we figure out how to clean their coal up. Because it’s going to ruin your lungs and there’s nothing we can do about it. No coal plants here in America. Build them, if they’re going to build them over there, make ’em clean because they’re killing you.