Coal-fired electric power plants might be in danger of extinction at the hands of global warming alarmists, possibly setting the nation up for a looming energy crisis like none it's ever experienced.
Yet, for the most part, national media outlets have been quite silent on this issue, making it appear that green press members don't want the public to understand the real ramifications of solutions being offered by climate alarmists such as Nobel Laureate Al Gore, Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-Cal.), and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Cal.).
For some background, on October 20, NewsBusters reported a decision by the State of Kansas to deny an electricity producer a license to build coal-fired power plants citing global warming concerns as one of the primary reasons. As it turns out, this wasn't the first such incident, as the Associated Press reported on October 18 (h/t NBer dscott):
At least 16 coal-fired power plant proposals nationwide have been scrapped in recent months and more than three dozen have been delayed as utilities face increasing pressure due to concerns over global warming and rising construction costs.
From what I can tell, Fox News.com was the only major media outlet that carried that wire story.
Yet, much more importantly, the incidence of coal-fired power plant rejection is much greater than previously thought as evidenced by the following October 10 article from the Tampa Tribune (emphasis added):
Florida, a state that has fought hard to preserve the ban on oil production off its shores, has effectively closed the door on another traditional source of energy.
Coal, the black rock used to generate half of the nation's electricity, is getting the heave-ho in Florida for its hefty output of carbon dioxide, a greenhouse gas that scientists have linked to global warming.
This year, five planned power plants have been scrapped in the wake of Gov. Charlie Crist's crusade against coal. Two coal plants were rejected by state regulators while three other coal projects were dropped as Crist's opposition to coal resonated across the state.
Altogether, the five plants would have generated 4,642 megawatts of electricity, enough power for nearly 3 million homes in Florida.
The need for that power has not disappeared, and if coal is no longer an option, electric utilities will be forced to turn to more expensive, less reliable and riskier forms of energy.
But without coal, keeping the lights on in Florida will be almost impossible.
Add it all up, and this is very bad news for a nation with continually growing electricity demands. From the previously mentioned AP article (emphasis added):
But the trend also could portend problems in satisfying a projected 40 percent increase in electricity demand by 2030, said James Owen with the Edison Electric Institute, which represents many of the nation's major utilities.
Yet, according to LexisNexis, the only television news outlet that has addressed this issue during the timeframe that these articles were published was Fox News. I guess ABC, NBC, CBS, CNN, and MSNBC don't want the public to know about this looming crisis.
Just how serious is it? Well, across the Atlantic Ocean, England might be experiencing staged blackouts this winter according to an article in Wednesday's Guardian (emphasis added throughout):
Britain faces the prospect of power shortages and soaring prices this winter after the National Grid warned of a shortfall in electricity-generating capacity yesterday. The alert coincides with a surge in gas prices, which are now 40% higher than in continental Europe, and the confirmation that a vital import plant in South Wales will not be operational this winter.
And it emerged last night that the energy minister, Malcolm Wicks, met power providers and users last week to discuss mounting concerns that the UK was heading into another winter of soaring prices and power shortages, similar to the one that forced some manufacturers to shut down capacity 24 months ago.
The fragility of the country's power infrastructure is partly the result of a series of breakdowns at the UK's ageing nuclear reactors.
Though Britain's problems are different than ours, the inconvenient truth is that as no new nuclear power plants have been built in America for several decades, this sudden movement away from coal in the face of a projected 40 percent increase in electricity demand means that U.S. citizens might soon be joining their English cousins in cold, dark houses.
Sadly, our media don't want you to be aware of this, for maybe that would change your view of global warming.
After all, up to this point, solutions actively discussed by press members include relative trivialities like changing light bulbs, purchasing hybrid cars, and only using one tissue of toilet paper when you go to the lavatory.
However, if Americans were fully apprised that this sudden eschewing of coal could leave them literally in the dark in the not-so-distant future, might they be more interested in the debate media disingenuously claim is over?
If you think I'm being too cynical for my own good, ask yourself what kind of coverage this possible energy crisis might be getting if it could be blamed on President Bush and/or Republicans.