The Center for American Progress has a terrific new report on “Global Warming and the Future of Coal,” by Ken Berlin and Robert Sussman.
The report explores what to do about the explosive growth in coal plant construction projected for the coming quarter century — 1,400 gigawatts of electricity by 2030, with more than 10% in the U.S. alone.
In the absence of emission controls, these new plants will increase worldwide annual emissions of carbon dioxide by approximately 7.6 billion metric tons by 2030. These emissions would equal roughly 50 percent of all fossil fuel emissions over the past 250 years.
So we must have emissions controls on the vast majority of those plants. The report looks at a variety of policy measures that might achieve that goal and recommends
Requiring all new coal power plants to meet an “emission performance” standard that limits CO2 emissions to levels achievable with CCS systems.
That is the best way to maintain coal’s viability in a carbon-constrained world.
Watch Bob Sussman discuss the report (YouTube)
Watch Ken Berlin discuss the report (YouTube)