DV Archive

Decision Virginia Archive 8/08- 7/12

Obama and Clean Coal

with 8 comments

Ryan Nobles – bioemail

It is an issue that if it catches on it could be enough to keep Barack Obama from a victory in Virginia. The Obama campaign, while proud of its record on environmental issues, has worked very hard to court voters who have connection to the coal industry.

The work he has done plays directly into his strategy of winning Virginia. Score big in the Northern D-C suburbs, and then take enough of a percentage of the conservative and rural parts of the state to win by a slim margin. Polls at this point, reflect that his strategy is working.

That strategy falls apart if he loses even a small portion of that support in traditionally “red” areas. So far many of these voters who have in the past have never been inclined to vote Democrat feel comfortable voting for Obama (primarily because of the economy). But if one issue can strike a chord to make them no longer comfortable, he could lose that margin of victory he needs.

Enter the clean coal debate. Southwest Virginia is filled with people who are very reliant on the coal industry. Republicans have tried desperately to convince people living there that Obama and his environmentally friendly record are not in line with the needs of the coal industry. You may recall how they seized on some comments made by Senator Joe Biden during a rope line in Ohio.

Obama answered the comments by Biden, by pointing to his campaign platform, which specifically states support for the development of clean coal technology.

But despite Obama’s platform and his defense of clean coal technology, many leaders in the coal industry are fearful that his dedication to coal is not as strong as his dedication to the environment. Many leading environmental advocacy groups consider clean coal to be a myth.

This fear is why today Obama opponents are seizing on a newly released audio recording where Obama tells the San Francisco Chronicle what his plans are when it comes to the coal industry. In the interview Obama talks about his desire to use an “aggressive” cap and trade system when it relates to coal. He also claims in the interview that he is open to companies developing coal plants, but if they do, the cap and trade system will “bankrupt” them.

Here is the transcript of his quote:
“The only thing I’ve said with respect to coal, I haven’t been some coal booster. What I have said is that for us to take coal off the table as a (sic) ideological matter as opposed to saying if technology allows us to use coal in a clean way, we should pursue it.

So if somebody wants to build a coal-powered plant, they can. It’s just that it will bankrupt them.”

Not exactly what people who work and rely on coal plants would consider a strong support for their industry.

But this close to election day, will it resonate enough to make a difference? Someone is certainly hoping it will. The story is on the front page of today’s Drudge Report and I personally have received somewhere in the neighborhood of 75 e-mails from people begging us to run the story.

Written by Ryan Nobles

November 2, 2008 at 9:54 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

Tagged with ,

8 Responses

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  1. […] and Clean Coal Posted in November 2nd, 2008 by in Uncategorized Obama and Clean Coal You may recall how they seized on some comments made by Senator Joe Biden during a rope line in […]

  2. Please run this story. Virginians need to know that if we elect Obama as president, he will cause us to lose jobs, not create them, like he has promised. Virginia, rethink your choice, vote on the issues, not the rhetoric.

    CL

    November 3, 2008 at 3:59 pm

  3. The McCain camp is misrepresenting Obama’s coal comments. In fact, McCain and Obama hold the same position on coal.

    What the McCain camp is not giving you from the original tape:

    Obama: “But this notion of no coal, I think, is an illusion. Because the fact of the matter is is that right now we are getting a lot of our energy from coal. And China is building a coal-powered plant once a week. So what we have to do then is figure out how can we use coal without emitting greenhouse gases and carbon.”

    Obama and Biden on Clean Coal: Develop and Deploy Clean Coal Technology. Carbon capture and storage technologies hold enormous potential to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions as we power our economy with domestically produced and secure energy. As a U.S. Senator, Obama has worked tirelessly to ensure that clean coal technology becomes commercialized. An Obama administration will provide incentives to accelerate private sector investment in commercial scale zero-carbon coal facilities. In order to maximize the speed with which we advance this critical technology, Barack Obama and Joe Biden will instruct DOE to enter into public private partnerships to develop 5 “first-of-a-kind” commercial scale coal-fired plants with carbon capture and sequestration.

    Obama Passed An Amendment Supported by Biden To Add $200M For Carbon Capture And Sequestration Technology In Senate’s FY 2008 Budget. Obama was the chief sponsor of an amendment to the 2008 Senate Budget resolution that added $200 million for Function 270 (Energy) for the demonstration and monitoring of carbon capture and sequestration technology by the Department of Energy. [SA 599 to SCR 21, Agreed to by Unanimous Consent, 3/23/07]

    Biden Proposed Energy Plan That Would Invest In Technologies To Use Coal More Cleanly. In 2007, Biden proposed an energy plan, “Joe Biden supports more than $50 billion in new incentives for research into: alternative fuel and energy sources, renewable energy technology, nuclear waste management and safety, and carbon capture and sequestration technologies that could allow us to use coal cleanly.” [Biden for President Press Release, 11/20/07]

    Source: http://www.whptv.com/news/local/story.aspx?content_id=43762b42-8e1c-4ad9-9a0e-3c63383449fb

    Psywillow

    November 3, 2008 at 5:10 pm

  4. […] comments from Barack Obama supporters who, just like the Obama campaign, say that the comments from his interview with the San Francisco Chronicle have been taken out of […]

  5. ANYONE WHO IS CONSIDERING TO VOTE FOR OBAMA SHOULD CHECK INTO OBAMA’S OPINION OF THE COAL INDUSTRY. I HAVE HEARD THIS DISCUSSED ON FOX NEWS MANY TIMES. IT DOESN’T SOUND GOOD. LET’S VOTE FOR JOBS THE MCCAIN WAY. BETTER GET ALL THE INFORMATION BEFORE YOU VOTE.

    DONNA

    November 3, 2008 at 11:59 pm

  6. This technology provided by you Obama has worked tirelessly to ensure that clean coal technology becomes commercialized. An Obama administration will provide incentives to accelerate private sector investment in commercial scale zero-carbon coal facilities. In order to maximize the speed with which we advance this critical technology, Barack Obama and Joe Biden will instruct DOE to enter into public private partnerships to develop 5 “first-of-a-kind” commercial scale coal-fired plants with carbon capture and sequestration is very good and giving good results.

    Robot

    November 10, 2008 at 6:41 am

  7. With the recent explosion in crude oil and natural gas prices, analysts are no longer wondering if coal prices will catch up but when. There are still many opponents to coal, mainly environmentalists, and the term “clean coal” still remains an oxymoran to most people.

    eddisionklein

    November 10, 2008 at 8:40 am

  8. Many leading environmental advocacy groups consider clean coal to be a myth and Obama support for the Clean Coal technology.

    Clean coal technology

    February 9, 2009 at 11:25 am


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