Solar Trash compactors on the streets of Rosslyn, Virginia.
Senator Robert Byrd passed away early this morning, just days after a study showing that coal is a money loser for his home state of West Virginia. The interests of the coal industry and the senator were intertwined for nearly all of Byrd’s 51 years in the Senate. He saw the heyday of coal production and cheap fuel; the mechanization of mining, and with it, the birth of mountain top removal.
After 9/11, Americans were forced to recognize the reality of global terrorism – a reality that other countries had been wrestling with for decades. The BP oil disaster, which President Obama has likened to an environmental 9/11, is forcing us to recognize another painful reality with global implications – the true cost of energy.
Trying to answer the troubling questions about how the BP Oil Disaster was allowed to happen keeps turning up the same catastrophic mixture of lies, mismanagement, corner cutting, and recklessness. It’s clear now that the oil companies know how to get oil from deep underwater, but have no idea how to prevent or stop a disaster with any reliability. How could we have given companies with such inherently destructive practices access to priceless public property, when they had no ability to care for it? Who let them do this?
On the heels of President Obama’s renewed call for clean energy technologies in last night’s Oval Office speech, we’re particularly baffled by this piece in The Examiner detailing how the US Air Force is now testing a coal-based jet fuel.