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News & Views of Phillips Since 1976
Tuesday March 5th 2024

Clean Power?

By Peter Molenaar

Tucked in the south-west corner of the Phillips Neighborhood is an impressive facility dubbed the Colin Powell Youth Leadership Center.  The Center saw our Congressman Keith Ellison play host to a “celebration of the Clean Power Plan.”Â  Yes, the aggrandizements were well distributed, to be sure.  However, my inner voice rudely screamed, over and over:  “What”'s the plan for the plan, man, what”'s the plan for the plan?”

Let”'s assume, as some people do, that vast wind and solar farms might sustain a modern economy and prevent social disaster.  Then, by what source of energy would we arrive at this happy conclusion?  Answer: a heavy draw from coal fired plants.  (Note:  I worked 35 years at Smith Foundry.)  Meanwhile, glaciers and icecaps disappear.

True, existing coal fired plants might achieve a 30% emissions reduction by switching to natural gas.  But, wait.  Synfuel, derived from natural gas, was to have been the replacement for petroleum derived gasoline”¦synfuel being engine ready, less expensive, and much cleaner burning.  Oops”¦can”'t go there now, not under the “plan.”

What”'s a rational nation to do?

Knowing that, in the transition period, we must rely on coal reserves, it follows:  the technology to sequester CO2 emissions (in the form of algae) must be developed and mandated for existing coal fired plants. The goal should be an 80% reduction in emissions (not 30%). Okay?

Forgive me, please”¦

The separate power plants do not have the where-with-all to develop the required technology, and this is why the “Clean Power Plan” is nothing but a formula for disaster.

Hey, the Manhattan project produced the A-bomb, and yes, we did put a man on the moon.  Must we make revolution to preserve the planet for precious living things?

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