Greenpeace: Quit Coal

Coal

Coal fired power plants are the biggest source of man made CO2 emissions. This makes coal energy the single greatest threat facing our climate.

Make no mistake: coal is dirty. From the destruction of mountaintops to the poisoning of our water and air to global warming, coal is a threat to our health and environment.

To secure a safe climate and healthy future, we must end our dependence on coal. The good news is that with clean, renewable energy, we can get off coal while creating jobs, saving consumers money, and growing our economy.

Coal Fuels Global Warming

Global warming is a clear and present danger to America's public health, economy, and environment. One record-breaking hurricane season follows another. Declining mountain snowpack is aggravating water shortages in the West. California's destructive wildfire season has become longer and more destructive than ever before. This is what global warming looks like.

Coal is the most polluting of all fossil fuels and the largest single source of global warming pollution in the world. Currently one-third of all CO2 emissions comes from burning coal. To curb global warming pollution to the levels needed to minimize the risk of catastrophic global warming, we must end our use of coal in the U.S. within the next 30-40 years.

Unfortunately, governments around the world are allowing, and in some cases subsidizing, the construction of hundreds of new coal-fired power plants. If these plants are built, CO2 emissions from coal are expected to rise 60 percent by 2030, severely undermining efforts to tackle climate change. Here in the U.S., according to a Coal Moratorium NOW! survey, nearly 100 coal plants are currently under construction or in the planning process.

Coal is NOT Clean

Greenpeace image - Coal is DirtyAfter multi-million-dollar PR campaigns by the coal industry, many in government have become seduced by the illusion of “carbon-free coal.” The industry wants Americans to believe that coal can be made safe for the environment by capturing and permanently storing the global warming pollution.

This technology, Carbon, Capture and Storage (CCS) is a false hope. Despite tens of billions in public subsidies, it has never been made to work. The idea that the same coal industry that spilled enormous amounts of coal ash sludge last December in Tennessee will be able to permanently store billions of tons of a clear, odorless gas with no leakage is hard to imagine, to say the least. Yet vague promises of CCS are being used to justify building new coal-fired plants. But any new coal-fired power plant will contribute massively to the climate crisis.

Demand Real Change

Greenpeace image - Capitol Climate ActionThe world doesn't need more coal — we need an Energy Revolution. The world has enough technically accessible renewable energy to meet current energy demand almost six times over. Renewable technologies, such as wind, solar, sustainable bioenergy and more can revolutionize the ways we produce energy and prevent dangerous global warming.

People across the world are taking on the struggles themselves. Across the world environmental activists, students, doctors, church leaders and many more are mobilizing against coal. Greenpeace joins these activists in their efforts to save the climate and quit coal.

Learn more about the Capitol Climate Action, which occurred in March of 2009 and was the largest civil disobedience on global warming in U.S. history.

The latest updates

 

Meet the coal lobbyists who call mercury safeguards 'unfortunate'

Blog by Joe Smyth | December 21, 2011

After years of delay, the Environmental Protection Agency is finally issuing safeguards that will protect Americans by reducing the amount of mercury pollution and other poisons emitted by coal plants around the country. It's good...

Devastating scenes of climate change in rural China

Blog by admin | December 16, 2011

The impacts of climate change are already being felt. Average global temperatures have risen every decade since the 1970s. 2010 tied 2005 as the hottest year on record. Overall, the 10 hottest years on record have all occurred in the...

21st Century Activism: Why big business doesn’t always have to be the bad guy

Blog by Philip Radford | December 15, 2011

Today is a great day for the future of the IT sector.   Over the past few years, we’ve campaigned hard against Facebook to get them to commit to clean energy – specifically, we wanted them to change their siting policy—the decisions...

Senator Murkowski continues dirty air affair with polluter lobbyists

Blog by Joe Smyth | December 13, 2011

Senator Murkowski announced yesterday she plans to introduce legislation to weaken upcoming safeguards that would protect Americans from mercury pollution and other dangerous emissions from coal fired power plants. Those mercury...

Duke Energy distances itself from ERCC's attacks on Mercury Rule

Blog by Robert Gardner | December 7, 2011

Greenpeace International Executive Director Kumi Naidoo and local activists inspect the Riverbend coal plant in North Carolina. The plant, owned by Duke Energy, has emitted more than a thousand pounds of mercury pollution over the...

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