A Canadian coal phase-out


in Canada, Economics, Politics, The environment

Both The Globe and Mail and The New York Times are reporting on recent comments from Jim Prentice, Canada’s minister of the environment, about phasing out coal-fired electricity in Canada:

“The concept is that, as these facilities are fully amortized and their useful life fully expended, they would not be replaced with coal.”

That is certainly necessary, but may not be sufficient to achieve Canada’s domestic emission reduction targets. Indeed, if the world as a whole is to get onto an emissions path consistent with avoiding dangerous climate change, it will probably be necessary to scrap some existing coal plants before the end of their working lives.

About 18% of Canada’s current greenhouse gas emissions are from coal-fired electricity, with facilities in Ontario (about 25% of the total), Alberta (about 47%), Saskatchewan, Nova Scotia, and New Brunswick.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

. May 5, 2009 at 5:48 pm

4 May 09
Canada to the Rescue (of the Coal Industry)

Canada’s science minister, Gary Goodyear, was in Washington recently talking up how Canadian research may usher in a era of “clean coal”. Ottawa is shoveling $1 billion for research related to the dubious concept of “carbon capture and storage”, targeted largely at the Alberta tar sands.

Goodyear implied that the Canadian brain trust could develop technologies to keep the carbon party going on both sides of the border without any of those nasty emissions.

Is this good news? Hardly.

It’s more like a drunk trying to talk a drinking buddy out of going to his first AA meeting.

America under the Obama Administration has been making the first bold steps to getting serious about climate change. A cap and trade bill is moving through Congress. The EPA listed carbon as a “pollutant” opening the door for regulation under the Clean Air Act. Obama has pledged billions in tax dollars and incentive to double renewable energy production in US in the next three years.

Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: