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PLEASE READ THIS and consider going to the website and signing the petition. I have created links and tried to make it as easy as possible, even providing a ready-made message for anyone to use to personalize your signature on the petition.
In the next few weeks, Congress could vote to DOUBLE the amount of greenhouse gases America produces from our cars and planes.1
It's the greatest single threat to solving the climate crisis in a decade.
It sounds crazy. But Congress is rushing through a package that could lock us into liquid coal as our country's new energy source for transportation. For every mile driven, coal-based fuels produce as much as twice as many greenhouse gases as petroleum.2 That means even a Prius would drive like a Hummer.
The coal industry has been lobbying for this break for years, and many in Congress don't understand the facts. Can you sign on to our petition opposing liquid coal right now—and then please alert your friends?
"Liquid coal would be a disaster in our fight against the climate crisis. Congress should vote against tax breaks and subsidies for coal."
Clicking here adds your name to the petition:
The legislation would take billions in taxpayer dollars to build up to 10 more dirty coal plants, provide taxpayer subsidies when the fuel can't compete on the open market, and guarantee that the government will buy this fuel no matter what.3
The industry promises to clean up after itself, but "clean coal" doesn't exist yet—it's pure fiction. While some technology is being tested to capture the greenhouse gas before it goes into the air, no one knows if it will work. But the plants will be built regardless.
To make matters worse, the financial outlook on this technology is shaky, which means taxpayers could be left holding the bag. According to an MIT study, we could spend $70 billion to replace just 10 percent of current gasoline use.4 And by the time we bring the technology to market, it is likely that cheaper, cleaner fuels will be available for less money.
These snake oil salesmen are in the Capitol in force—selling Congress a line that kicking our oil habit is easy if we just commit billions in taxpayer money to coal. And some in Congress are buying it—even folks who have been with us thus far on the climate crisis. But with this bill, they're gambling with the future of our planet.
Can you sign our petition telling Congress to vote no on coal in the upcoming energy package?
Clicking here will add your name:
The Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) has this to say about the proposal:
The coal industry is touting a plan to transform millions of tons of coal into diesel and other liquid fuels—an expensive, inefficient process that releases large quantities of heat-trapping carbon dioxide into our air. Fortunately, better, cleaner options exist to reduce America's dependence on oil: efficiency, smart growth, and renewable fuels.5
An OpEd in the Lexington Herald-Leader, in the heart of coal country, put it this way:
Instead of propping up a liquid-coal industry that market forces have long rejected, the government should harness the market to advance the twin goals of energy independence and reversing global warming.6
We need less coal, not more. And we need government support to go toward developing the commercial scale technology for truly clean alternatives—solar and wind. These energy sources are clean and abundant, and these industries create jobs and can be a boon to the economy.
Please help make sure Congress doesn't take us backward in our fight against global warming. Clicking below adds your name:
Thanks for all you do,
–Ilyse, Mari, Jennifer, Matt and the MoveOn.org Political Action Team
Wednesday, June 6th, 2007
1. "Lawmakers look at coal to break oil dependence", Los Angeles Times, May 10, 2007
2. "Coal-To-Liquid Fuel Plant Plan Advances", The Houston Chronicle, May 31, 2007
2. "Lawmakers promote coal as an 'alternative fuel'", The Austin American-Statesman, May 29, 2007
3. " Billion-dollar boondoggle," The Roanoke Time, June 5, 2007
4. "Why Liquid Coal Is Not a Viable Option to Move America Beyond Oil," Report by Natural Resources Defense Council, February, 2007
5. ""Liquid coal a new version of snake oil" The Lexington Herald-Leader, June 3, 2007
MoveOn.org Political Action is entirely funded by 3.2 million members. They have no corporate contributors, no foundation grants, no money from unions. Their tiny staff ensures that small contributions go a long way. If you'd like to support their work, go to:
Don't forget to go back up to the first two links, one or the other, they are identical, and sign the petition! After you give your name, email and zipcode (street address is optional), you can pen an optional message. Here's what I wrote to my congressperson and senators. Feel free to use all or any part of it, if you can't or don't feel up to writing a message of your own. You all might find the article I provide a link for of interest too. NIMBY is short for Not In My BackYard meaning that though everyone wants their garbage taken away and buried somewhere, no one wants to live near a landfill.
Message to add to petition, if you like:
We do not need to use CO2-emitting coal for diesel fuel, coal which will only double the amount of greenhouse gases spewed into the atmosphere by our country! Please take a look at this article describing thermal depolymerization and Changing World Technologies
This process not only produces a net CO2 emission of zero, it provides a method of disposing of much of the unwanted garbage and nonbiodegradable waste that presently goes into NIMBY landfills. Please, please, please, STOP, think about the impact of this bill on our climate before signing on to something that might prove to hasten the end of life as we know it on this planet. The melting permafrost may prove to be the tipping point that dooms us all, but if not, we need to do EVERYTHING in our power to halt the juggernaut of climate change while there is still time.
Thank you for taking the time to read this note and, what is much more important, for thinking about this bill before blindly signing on the dotted line just because lobbyists for the coal industry have promised clean fuel they will not, indeed cannot guarantee. Coal energy, from diesel fuel or coal fired electric plants is dirty, heavily CO2-emitting. Please put your energy and time behind renewable fuels that do not threaten all the species on earth.
I apologize for going on and on about this subject so often, but to me it is the single most critical issue of our time, more important even than my own mental health care/cure, more threatening, more dangerous, crucial in the most literal sense of the word ("crucial" comes from the Latin word crux, crucis or cross, meaning one is at a crossroads, a point of significant decision-making: Which direction do we go in NOW?)
I know we need universal health care, we need to end hunger in the third world and and stop the genocide in Darfur and for cripes sakes get out of Iraq and solve the Israeli/Palestinian problem and...Not "us" as in the U.S. but us as in humanity, people in general. We have plenty of problems that need attention. But to my mind every single one of them pale to a mere goassamer pastel compared to this looming global catastophe that could render all the others moot. What use is solving the Israeli/Palestinian conflict if the seas rise 200 feet due to the loss of the Antarctic ice cap and Israel disappears from the map? Ditto most of the world's coastline? Give rein to your imagination, if you dare, and think of the ramifications of the loss of most of Florida, all of Rhode Island, Cape Cod, all the Carolinas' coast, Washington DC and NYC, Long Island altogether, New Haven and Yale and most of coastal Connecticut; Boston and Harvard and all related institutions, and that is just the upper East coast. What about Georgia and Maryland? What about the Gulf coast? We're speaking only of the U.S.! Oh, dear, omigod, I simply cannot bear thinking about the future that awaits us! And while I realize that it doesn't help me any to be pessimistic, I see no grounds upon which to be an optimist, and feel I am among the very few who are realistically looking at what is to come, and trying to deal with it, coolly but without flinching. I am not, as the government forced climatologists to do in the latest global warming reports released to the public, toning down the truth. Please note that last sentence. What we were told was NOT THE WHOLE TRUTH. THe Bush administration deliberately forced the panel of climate scientists NOT to tell us everything they wanted us to know. They were made to sweeten the medicine, give better numbers, more easily swallowable predictions than they actually had. In short, even though by omission and by proxy, the government has lied to us yet again.
Why? Why? Why? I do not know. Perhaps because Bush cannot let it be known just how much damage he has inflicted on the world by his intransigence on the climate and global warming issue, by his evil greedy payouts of contracts and political largesse to friends and business cronies at the expense of the country at large and our reputation in the world. I am SO ANGRY at him, and SO furious at the way he has single-handedly destroyed nearly everything this country had going for it, and all in the last eight years, so enraged I could...But I will not say what I could do, because you-know-who might be spying on me, listening in. After all, nobody has actually STOPPED the NSA from wiretapping and surveillance of American citizens. THe only difference is that now the agency does it openly!
I am NOT paranoid in this. I am troubled, yes, but I know what I am talking about, and have known about these programs for years, well before they were general knowledge. I tried to warn people about Eschelon for years, the Eye in the Sky that secretly intercepted communications and computer discourse domestically and abroad. But no one listened. I...Okay. I'll cease and desist. But I knew then, and I know now a lot that you all have been able to close your eyes to. I don't blame you. I wish I weren't afflicted with this knowledge. Yes, I know I do have a tendency towards paranoia, yes, but in this I can only say that even paranoids have enemies. I have to warn you that most for-profit corporations, both foreign, esp Chinese, and domestic, are our enemies, out to get a buck any way possible, lying, cheating or stealing...if it can't earn it honestly. Think GE, think Dow Jones, think Monsanto or whatever it has merged with and turned into. They are not honest and they are NOT our friends. If my brain weren't as fuzzy and foggy as old beaten eggwhites, I'd name many more. As it is, I'll stop here.
Okay, enough for now.Posted by pamwagg at June 7, 2007 10:41 PM | TrackBack