There Is No Such Thing as Clean Coal

The final version of President Trump’s jihad against clean power has been released:

Under Trump, the Environmental Protection Agency has branded the rewrite as the Affordable Clean Energy rule and designed it to fulfill the president’s campaign promise to bring back the coal industry.

This kind of Orwellian branding has been around for a long time, but this really nails the whole genre. Clean energy = more coal. It’s the official version of Trump’s belief that if he says “clean coal” often enough, then coal will actually become clean.

I don’t know if this is just a routine lie on his part or if he’s really such a dunce that he doesn’t realize there’s no such thing. I don’t think anyone knows. But if Trump’s plan goes into effect, thousands more people will die and gigatons more carbon will be spewed into the air. And the jobs? They’ll keep declining because the cheapest coal is strip-mined out west, where it’s mostly done by machines. But I don’t suppose Trump knows that either.

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Today, reader support makes up about two-thirds of our budget, allows us to dig deep on stories that matter, and lets us keep our reporting free for everyone. If you value what you get from Mother Jones, please join us with a tax-deductible donation today so we can keep on doing the type of journalism 2020 demands.

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