Shoichi Itoh’s guest column in The Seattle Times was interesting, but only lightly touched, if that, on some very important points [“The importance of Asia in the coal-export debate,” Opinion, Oct. 6]. First, U.S. investment firms are recommending against investing in companies that export coal. China is moving much more aggressively than the U.S….More
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We can’t afford inaction
Carbon dioxide is a major contributor to climate change. which affects weather, including superstorms, droughts and wildfires [“Obama’s coal plan catches up with climate policy in Olympia,” Opinion, June 4]. We, in Washington state, are vulnerable to all of these effects. The EPA regulation of power plants is a major effort to address climate change because power plants are among the largest sources of carbon pollution.
Because emissions of carbon dioxide are “free” under current economic systems, they have been dumping unlimited carbon pollution without regard to the costs. Washington is starting to address this issue by shutting down coal burning at the Centralia power plant.
But we cannot address it alone. We also receive coal-generated electricity from Montana, and addressing climate change requires a nationwide control of carbon emissions.
Costs of inaction are not something that Washington can afford. Impacts such as forest fires and acidification of the ocean are already costly, and the snowpack will likely decline to the point that agriculture will be severely affected.
William McPherson, Seattle
China and India will continue to pollute
President Obama’s proposed EPA coal power plant reduction policies areMore
Many, many thanks are due to President Obama for having the courage to propose new rules limiting carbon emissions from U.S. power plants [“Obama’s coal plan catches up with climate policy in Olympia,” Opinion, June 4]. When Congress does little or nothing about climate change, at least our president takes action. Emissions from power…More
The Seattle Times recently published a story on how U.S. Rep. Steve Daines, R-Mont., was upset that Washington Gov. Jay Inslee passed an executive order to lessen greenhouse gas emissions [“Montana lawmaker criticizes Washington’s coal-power plan,” Local News, May 12]. This would hurt Montana and Wyoming’s economy because 13 percent of Washington’s energy…More
I am writing in response to the article in The Times “China’s coal plants guzzle scarce water” [News, May 4]. The article states, “When operating at full capacity, the Datang International plant will require more than 7 billion gallons of water each year.” Any outrage expressed by our country toward China for this water waste is drastically misplaced.
Our country’s own fracking industry dwarfs China in water usage. Fracking, as many know, isMore
Coal use doesn’t need to be fatalistic
The energy investments of the fast-growing Asian economies are do-or-die decisions for the global climate [“China’s coal solution has carbon downside across globe,” News, May 4]. This is why our local battle against coal exports is so vital.
Shoveling cheap coal to Asia increases the economic incentives to continue building more coal plants, “locking in” carbon emissions that wreak climate havoc on all of us.
In China, as in the U.S., there is a robust debate about the energy future, and momentum is building for a clean energy revolution, powered by efficient use of carbon-free energy sources. But The Seattle Times’ article ends with a fatalistic prognosis from a coal-mining executive in China: “I firmly believe that coal is going to be the main generating source of energy at least for the next 50 years.”
Well, of course he does; he represents the coal industry. It’s a bit like ending an article on the future of honey by asking a bee whether honey is a good idea.
K.C. Golden, senior policy adviser at Climate Solutions, Seattle
Climate change deserves to be front-page news
The Seattle Times’ front-page news on ocean acidification was both a relief and a source of
I spent 40 years in the maritime industry. I worked in San Francisco, Oakland, Portland and Seattle for a steamship company. I spent eight years working for a stevedoring company in Seattle. And I worked for 20 years as a maritime consultant and expert witness. I also served as chairman of the Seattle Metropolitan Chamber…More
A modest win-win proposal
Brian M. Rosenthal’s report about former Attorney General Rob McKenna’s lobbying gig on behalf of Montana and North Dakota coal interests raises several issues [On behalf of North Dakota and Montana, McKenna calls Washington coal study unconstitutional,” Online, Nov. 21].
It’s a modest win-win proposal that might help the coal dust, acid rain and diesel particulates go down a little easier on the Washington state end of the business and help avoid infringing on the rights of Montana and North Dakota citizens to mine and move their coal.
Quit coal Bravo for your excellent series on the causes and costs of ocean acidification. [“Sea Change,” page one, Sept. 15-17.] It is a tragedy of unimaginable scope. The carbon dioxide responsible for this disaster is created by transportation and power plants that use fossil fuels. Coal is the dirtiest of those fuels. Why then is Puget…More
Widespread damage will result Proponents of inundating Washington with coal and crude-oil exports are currently spending tens of millions of dollars on a sophisticated public-relations offensive, promising jobs and environmental protection. Please take that message with a grain of salt. Realize it was crafted by a skilled advertising agency to manipulate you into believing there may be…More