Introducing the Clean Coal Smackdown

Here on DeSmog we've been writing a lot about so-called “clean coal,” a word that would fit well under Stephen Colbert's definition of truthiness:

what you want the facts to be, as opposed to what the facts are. What feels like the right answer as opposed to what reality will support.”

Coal is far from clean, but a $40 million advertising and public relations campaign by a coal industry front group calling itself the “American Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity” is doing its darndest to try and convince us otherwise.

So we would like to proudly introduce the Clean Coal Smackdown!

The Best Clean Coal Ad Ever!

Check out this new animation by well-known animator Mark Fiore. Very well done commentary on the absurdity of so-called “clean coal.”

Flawed Oregon Petition Rises Again

Climate “Science” by the Pound

A climate change petition started in 1988 by the tobacco industry's favourite scientist (Federick Seitz), has just been re-released with a reported 31,072 signatures of “scientists” - some of whom are reported to actually work in the field.

The Oregon Petition was originally started by Dr. Seitz (formerly the principal adviser to the RJ Reynolds medical research program) and by Arthur B. Robinson, a lapsed biochemist who now operates the one-man Oregon Institute of Science and Medicine.

Climate's Sub-Prime Mortgages

Carbon offsets — and emissions-trading schemes, their industrial-scale siblings — are the environmental version of subprime mortgages.

They both started from some admirable premises. Developing countries like China and India need to be recruited into the fight against greenhouse gases. And markets are a better mechanism for change than command and control. But when those big ideas collide with the real world, the result is hand-waving at best, outright scams at worst. Moreover, they give the illusion that something constructive is being done.

Reckless Adaptation; Goofy Journalism

Wired Magazine's Spencer Reiss advises “Climate Change is Inevitable. Get Used To It.”

It is, however, easier to be right about the first part than sanguine about the second. Rather than putting our energies into limiting or reversing the central problem of greenhouse gas emission, Reiss would have us concentrate on “adaptation,” designing and siting houses well away from rising tides and putting our farming faith in Monsanto.

He concludes: “We're in charge here” - invoking a level of hubris that may be more frightening than climate change itself.

 

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