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The Coen Brothers Take on Dirty Clean Coal

Academy Award-winning directors Joel and Ethan Coen are taking on the oxymoron that is "clean coal." The brothers directed the spot for the Reality Campaign to "call out the coal industry on their dirty lies." The group wants to spread the message that "clean" coal is like a healthy cigarette, while also pointing out that no clean coal plant actually exists in the US.

While the Coen brothers work on the powerful PR message against clean coal, President Obama gave it a shout-out in his speech to Congress this week, calling it an environmentally friendly, and cost-effective energy source. Maybe Obama was swayed by the American Coalition For Clean Coal Electricity (ACCCE), which spent millions of coal industry money in advertising last year to promote clean coal.

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stephley stephley 8 years
A) How do you know what I want? B) when did what I want become the standard for U.S. policy? That's utterly bogus.
UnDave35 UnDave35 8 years
I'm saying that NO President has had an energy policy like waht Steph wants. Not either Bush, not Clinton, Not Reagan. It was deemed not cost effective, and the technology just wasn't there. The technology still isn't there, and it still isn't cost effective, but it's getting closer.
Are you trying to say that Reagan had a good energy policy? Was he not held to the oil companies? Not to mention, when he moved into the White House, he removed the solar panels from the roof. Can you imagine where we'd be today if he had continued to advance clean energy, rather than fight it for the benefit of the oil companies?
stephley stephley 8 years
You're really working hard to block out the last 8 years aren't you?
UnDave35 UnDave35 8 years
If the government had had an energy policy for the last 24 years, we might not be in this mess.
stephley stephley 8 years
The sludge in Tennessee is not my preconceived notion, it's very nasty reality. Strip mining isn't my preconceived notion, it's very nasty reality. Black lung isn't my preconceived notion, it's very nasty reality. If the government had had an energy policy for the past eight years, we might be somewhere in cutting our dependence on oil and coal, but it didn't. That's a very nasty reality.
StolzeMama StolzeMama 8 years
Go ahead and tell all of those people who depend on that dirty coal income that they will be out of a job. I am all for switching to renewable sources and finding new sources of power, but that cannot be done overnight, and actually needs to be done slowly as to not cause another downturn in our economy. I mean we've got Obama who will be adding taxes on gas companies, simply because they are successful, our gas prices are sure to go up. At this time, if a coal fired power plant can be cleaner burning, i am all for it. I just simply cannot believe there is a smear tactic on trying to make something cleaner. You do realize that 60% of our power in the US comes from coal, right? What shall we do in your eyes, shut that down completely. Tell that to Montana and Wyoming whose economies probably wouldn't exist without it. Over 50 mill was spent to research into futuregen a clean coal project that was a conglomeration of several power companies. If we can gasify coal, then we can sequester it. With no emissions sent into the atmosphere. That is clean. And having such a closed mind about it because of your preconceived notions about what is or is not clean is really going to hurt our economy and in the end our environment, because we all know we cannot implement new, clean technology without money. The money we spent on futuregen is worthless now because of smear campaigns like this. They have shut down the operations. That was our best hope aside from ces. But yeah good luck with that. Sure having that closed mind will get you far.
stephley stephley 8 years
"Since they are talking about cleaner ways of burning the coal, not digging it up, I don't know that that is applicable." Then that makes the notion of clean coal more of a cruel hoax: we haven't actually figured out how to burn it cleanly and we'll still be tearing up the environment, polluting communities and killing miners getting it out of the ground.
stephley stephley 8 years
That spill of 5.4 million cubic yards of coal ash that fouled homes and about 300 acres near Knoxville, Tennessee may have something to do with why people write coal off as dirty. Something cool being worked on is an idea of clean coal, not reality.
UnDave35 UnDave35 8 years
Since they are talking about cleaner ways of burning the coal, not digging it up, I don't know that that is applicable.
StolzeMama StolzeMama 8 years
If you want to see something cool that doesn't get a lot of attention cleanenergysystems dot com People are working on using existing sources of energy in a cleaner way. It is really sad that people write it off as dirty. It is like telling someone not to recycle their aluminum cans. No it isn't much, but at least it is something.
StolzeMama StolzeMama 8 years
I'll give you this much, they should call it cleaner coal, not clean coal.
mydiadem mydiadem 8 years
I don't know, growing up in Western PA I see how dirty and dangerous it is to mine the coal let alone convert it into energy. So yeah, I'm pretty skeptical that 'clean coal' isn't anything more than an oxymoron.
stephley stephley 8 years
I have googled it. What technology in use could be used to demonstrate for Obama the benefits of clean coal?
StolzeMama StolzeMama 8 years
Clean coal technology is an umbrella term used to describe technologies being developed that aim to reduce the environmental impact of coal energy generation.[1] These include chemically washing minerals and impurities from the coal, gasification (see also IGCC), treating the flue gases with steam to remove sulfur dioxide, carbon capture and storage technologies to capture the carbon dioxide from the flue gas and dewatering lower rank coals (brown coals) to improve the calorific quality, and thus the efficiency of the conversion into electricity.
StolzeMama StolzeMama 8 years
Google it steph.
StolzeMama StolzeMama 8 years
Coal must be used at this time, especially when we are in such dire fiscal times. At least it can be done in a cleaner manner than some current methods. Discrediting it is doing nothing for the environment or the economy.
stephley stephley 8 years
What technology would that be Dave?
UnDave35 UnDave35 8 years
"Maybe Obama was swayed by the American Coalition For Clean Coal Electricity (ACCCE)" Maybe he was swayed by the technology, rather than the hype.
anaisethenry anaisethenry 8 years
This is excellent!
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