Archive for 2007

Santa’s visit to South Carolina

                                    

Note: While ABEC does not endorse any of the presidential
candidates, we are stopping by as many campaign events as we can to
spread the message of our commitment to clean.

Fresh from Capitol Hill, Santa flew into Columbia, S.C., to make special deliveries to presidential candidate headquarters.

Spreading the message that clean American coal in your stocking is a
good thing if you’re concerned about the cost of electricity, energy
security and protecting the environment, Santa was well received as he
handed out Christmas stockings to staffers and volunteers.

      
   
       
   
                   
            
   
   
      

                               


Mr. Claus Goes to Washington

Don’t you just love it when things work out the way you want them to?
This morning we armed 30 Santas with stockings full of coal and sent
them to Capitol Hill to pay a visit to busy congressional staffers who
have apparently been very good this year!

The Santa posse hit all the congressional office buildings, plus the
Union Station and Capitol South Metro stops with our message that coal
for Christmas is actually a GOOD thing. We hope that this event will
make people understand that coal is affordable, reliable and a good
gift for both the economy AND the environment.

We were a little worried about how our Santas would be received, but
they were a big hit. Everyone loved the stockings and coal-shaped
chocolate that Santa handed out from his sack and many people decided
the skip the lines at the mall this season and have their pictures
taken with Santa right there on the street.

Not being the type of person to stay in one place too long (he does
travel the entire world in one night) our Santas also dropped by
presidential campaign offices in South Carolina, Nevada and Iowa to
spread our holiday message of energy independence!

Perhaps Santa handed some coal to you himself. Or perhaps you saw the coverage in The Hill newspaper

We’re happy Santa could take some time out of his busy schedule to
drive a point. Energy security and the environment are important things
to many Americans, and by continuing to invest in technologies to
further improve the environmental capability of our nation’s most
abundant energy resource helps to satisfy the wishes of a lot of folks
who have been good all year long.

Thanks again Santa, and happy holidays to everyone.

      
   
       
   
                   
            
   
   
      

      
   
       
   
                   
            
   
   
      

      
   
       
   
                   
            
   
   
      


Illinois Selected for FutureGen

Does everyone know what they want for the holidays? In case you missed it, we all got an early present this year. Today the FutureGen Alliance announced that they have selected Mattoon, Illinois, as the place where energy history will be made.

For the record, FutureGen is a public-private venture, which includes companies from around the world and the U.S. Department of Energy, and
was formed in 2003 to design and test technology required to turn coal into a gas that can be stripped of harmful emissions, then burned to
produce electricity and hydrogen.

FutureGen’s most ambitious goal is to capture carbon dioxide and store it underground permanently. When you hear us say that technology is
changing the way we will produce energy, FutureGen is the perfect example of what we’ve been saying.

So join me in applauding the 18,000 residents of Mattoon. They will be firsthand witnesses to how public-private partnerships can change the
way we approach and solve any issues the energy sector faces.


Clean Coal Van making the rounds in Iowa

Note: While ABEC does not endorse any of the presidential
candidates, we are stopping by as many campaign events as we can to
spread the message of our commitment to clean.

Here is a dispatch from the Iowa Power Van, which dropped by the Republican debate in Des Moines on Wednesday.

We’re making good strides in getting the candidates to talk about how clean coal should play a part in America’s energy future.

In the last few days, ABEC members attended Iowa events with John
Edwards, Mike Huckabee, Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama and Mitt Romney.

Winter weather has hit Iowa, but it is not slowing the pace of campaigning.

The clean coal van continues to log miles in the snow and ice and
has become a recognizable element at campaign events. It even made an
appearance at Friday’s annual Iowa Farm Bureau Dinner where Fred
Thompson was the guest speaker.

ABEC members also voiced support for sensible energy policies in a news
release that was distributed to daily and weekly papers in the state.


Clean coal turnout at campaign event

                                    

Note: While ABEC does not endorse any of the presidential
candidates, we are stopping by as many campaign events as we can to
spread the message of our commitment to clean.

South Carolina’s largest political rally in decades featured Barack
Obama and Oprah Winfrey today, and America’s Power Van and our
volunteers were on hand with the crowd of nearly 30,000.

A steady stream of voters from across South Carolina visited the
Power Van near the entrance to Williams-Brice Stadium. While
understandably eager to get inside to see Obama and Oprah, thousands of
those in attendance took the time to stop and learn more about our
commitment to continued reduction of regulated emissions, the
development of technology to capture and storage greenhouse gases,
providing reliable, affordable electricity and protecting America’s
security.

In addition to speaking with the throng of state and national media
on hand, we distributed several thousand brochures, flyers, t-shirts
and other materials to those in attendance.

                               


Sometimes Environmentalists Shoot Themselves in the Foot

Sometimes people who mean well can shoot themselves in the foot if they aren’t fully informed on the issues.

For example, some environmental special interest groups are fighting new coal-fired power plants in Kansas since they’d prefer other
renewable energy projects. But the result means that a dozen Kansas wind projects are now on hold.

As Roy Innis points out in a great article on TownHall.com, coal projects come with transmission lines to carry intermittent
wind-generated electricity. Without those transmission lines, we can’t have wind power.

I’ll bet most environmentalists didn’t know that when they opposed the coal plants.

Remember, wind power is great, but it can perform only when conditions are just right. That’s why it can help out at times but cannot be relied upon for 24/7 power.

In order to keep the lights on day and night, during cloudy days and sunny days, during windy days and calm days, we need electricity plants that provide base load electricity generation. These plants, many of which use coal to generate electricity, provide a steady flow of power at all times through the year. Renewables currently do not provide reliable base load generation

Innis does a great job of explaining the issue. And he has an interesting background. He’s the national chairman of the Congress of Racial Equality (CORE) and a life-long advocate for the poor. Take a look at the article and let us know what you think.


Those Chamber of Commerce ‘Radicals’

                                    

Did everyone see this video
on climate change from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce? I’m curious to
know what many bloggers would be saying if our organization produced
that spot. If you’re curious, do an Internet search on “ABEC” and
you’ll get the gist. But what are people saying about the Chamber of Commerce for disagreeing with flawed legislation? (Cricket, cricket)

"Climate legislation being considered by Congress could make it more
expensive to heat our homes, power our lives and drive our cars," the
narrator says. ”Is this really how Americans want to live?"

According to a Reuters story, the Chamber of Commerce opposes
"ill-conceived climate change policies and measures that could severely
damage the security and economy of the United States."

So what’s the verdict? Has the Chamber of Commerce lost its mind? Or is
it right? Is legislation that will negatively impact our economy just
for the sake of doing something the best way to go? I’m sure you all know where we stand on this one.

                               


Assignment…Google “Baseload Power”

Google. What haven’t they done to make our life easier? Now they want to make renewables cheaper than coal, and I for one hope they can figure out how to make that happen. If they do, we all win.

Their working hypothesis is that within 10 years (and $100,000,000 later) renewable energy can be cheaper than using coal to generate electricity. Here’s my question…how many years after that (and how many more zeros on the balance sheet) will it take to make it as reliable as coal?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Base_load_power_plant

Here’s the thing…cheap electricity is only a bargain if it works all the time whenever it is needed. For everything renewables can do, there is no way to make the wind blow on command or the sun to break through the clouds on dreary day (not to mention nighttime).

A news story in the Reno Gazette last Wednesday stated “But if renewable projects are more favorable, a lack of transmission lines needed to route energy produced at wind, solar and geothermal plants into the power grid remains a challenge.”

“Those renewable sources are where they are and can’t be moved around,” said Tom Darin, an attorney for Western Resource Advocates.

As I’ve stated, ideas like the one Google proposes is a situation where everyone wins, let’s just keep in mind that providing affordable and clean energy requires more than just one silver bullet to provide the answer, it is an endeavor so vast that it requires silver buckshot.