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"Clean Natural Gas" Replaces "Clean Coal" as the Fossil Fuel Industry's Scam-Du-Jour

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Bob Meinetz's picture
Nuclear Power Policy Activist Independent

I am a passionate advocate for the environment and nuclear energy. With the threat of climate change, I’ve embarked on a mission to help overcome the fears of nuclear energy. I’ve been active in...

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In recent weeks the U.S. State Department's Climate Envoy (and former anti-nuclear advocate) John Kerry made it clear to President Biden's climate team that, to meet climate commitments, it would be essential to keep existing U.S. nuclear plants open. Soon thereafter, White House sources reported President Biden was considering the extension of tax credits to nuclear plants.

In response, solar panel and wind turbine vendors did what they do best: threw sand in the gears, using two time-tested techniques:

1) Redirect support for nuclear to "advanced nuclear", the goal being to kick nuclear's can down the road by closing existing plants, while keeping hopes alive for a mythical "Nuclear 2.0" to arrive who-knows-when.

2) Attempt to revive ancient fears by falsely comparing modern plants to ones built half a century ago. Here, the goal is to make relicensing as onerous as possible by creating standards of safety that are literally impossible to achieve.

Fossil fuel vendors, in contrast, have always known that attacking their biggest rival only gives it free publicity. Thus, efforts have been focused on marketing new products that are supposedly "clean".

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Enter Clean Natural Gas, the new fossil fuel which will rendered clean by taking its nasty byproduct, CO2, and shoving it back underground. Where? I don't know, but there are two possibilities:

1) A massive underground cavern exists, where hundreds of billions of tonnes of CO2 can be stored indefinitely. It's accessible from anywhere in the world, and storage of CO2 can be independently verified. Or:

 2) A fake infrastructure (plumbing, wires, gauges, etc.) will be built at ordinary gas plants, for appearance. Then invisible, odorless CO2 will be dumped into the air as it always has been.

Which is most likely? You be the judge!

One of world's first zero-emission gas power plants to be built in Illinois

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