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Coal - Feb 17

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Green light for greenhouse gas burial at sea
U.N. OKs CO2 injection into ocean floor; activists have concerns

Alister Doyle, Reuters via MSNBC
OSLO, Norway - International rules allowing burial of greenhouse gases beneath the seabed entered into force on Saturday in what will be a step toward fighting global warming - if storage costs are cut and leaks can be averted.

The new rules will permit industrialists to capture heat-trapping gases from big emitters such as coal-fired power plants or steel mills and entomb them offshore -- slowing warming while allowing continued use of fossil fuels.
(12 Feb 2007)


Coal can't be clean - Flannery

Herald Sun (Australia)
AUSTRALIAN of the Year and leading scientist Dr Tim Flannery has questioned the viability of clean coal technology, saying it may be made redundant by cheaper and greener energy resources.

Dr Flannery today told the Australian Workers Union (AWU) biannual meeting on the Gold Coast there was a need to switch to low emission energy sources.

He was greeted with hearty applause from the 200 delegates - something which surprised the scientist who has been accused in the media of wanting to shut down the nation's coal industry.

He dismissed the claims as entirely untrue but admitted he had some reservations about the viability of clean coal technology, which is Queensland Premier Peter Beattie's preferred option to reduce gas emissions.

He said Australia did not possess the right geological conditions to support the clean coal process, which injected carbon dioxide emissions into the ground rather than releasing them into the atmosphere.
(14 Feb 2007)


Montana must turn coal from black to ‘green'

Staff, The Missoulian
Prospects for Montana's energy industry ride on fast-evolving market for climate-friendly power.

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The future economic prosperity of Montana - not to mention the fate of the world - rides on finding practical ways to dispose of carbon dioxide. Montana possesses the nation's largest reserves of coal, the nation's dominant fuel for electricity. Montana Gov. Brian Schweitzer envisions broader uses for coal through gasification and liquefaction. Montana also is a net producer of oil, the lifeblood of America. And Montana's forests comprise a huge, mostly untapped source of biofuel. The state's vast agricultural lands also have tremendous biofuel-production capacity.

Tapping even a portion of all this potential energy would generate great fortunes, create perhaps thousands of jobs and send whole rivers of tax revenues flowing into state and local treasuries. None of this can possibly happen, however, unless the producers of energy manage to keep a lid on carbon dioxide emissions. ..

Gov. Schweitzer touched on this in his State of the State address last month.
“It was California who changed their law, who said they will no longer buy electricity from anyone who increases the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere,” he said. “They are the 900-pound gorilla in the western United States for purchasing electricity. If we're going to sell into the California market, we will have to sell using wind power and coal gasification with sequestration. California will not accept and Montana should not put carbon dioxide in our atmosphere.” ..
(16 Feb 2007)


Rival firms dispute coal gasification

Dan Piller, Star Telegram
HOUSTON -- TXU Corp.'s plan to build 11 coal-fired power plants became the center of debate at a national energy conference Thursday, with the head of a New Jersey company advocating coal gasification as a cleaner source of electricity for Texas.

NRG Energy, which generates more than 10,000 megawatts of power in South Texas, proposed building a coal-gasification plant Thursday in South Texas, although TXU says the technology has not been proven to be economically feasible.

The company, based in Princeton, N.J., has gotten a license to build such a plant in western New York with some financial help from the state. It says gasification would reduce emissions, including carbon dioxide, that are believed to contribute to global warming.

But the president of a company that has a $300 million contract to install pollution-control equipment on TXU's new plants called the promises of coal-gasification "hype." ..
(16 Feb 2007)

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