Previewing his interview with the CEO of Sasol, a South African company that produces coal-based liquid fuels, chief business correspondent Ali Velshi admitted on CNN’s American Morning on Friday that “There are issues with coal,” but minimized its problems:
There are issues with coal. It’s not the cleanest thing in the world. You see the signs for clean coal, 99 percent clean. I’m not 99 percent clean when I get out of the shower. . . I just look clean.
Velshi’s hygiene is his own business, but it’s no secret that coal is a dirty fuel and Velshi’s “99 percent clean” is false:
– The misleading “clean coal” ads from the coal-industry front group ACCCE only claim that “today’s coal-based generating fleet is already 70 percent cleaner based upon regulated emissions per unit of energy produced.”
– Because coal use has more than tripled since 1970, total pollution from coal plants has increased. In fact, in 2004 the Clean Air Task Force found coal-plant pollution “cuts short the lives of nearly 24,000 people each year.”
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