Greenwash Watch: AmericasPower

The full page ad in the New York Times placed by "Americans for Balanced Energy Choices" says "Our commitment goes beyond clean."

Then they say "Through a $50 Billion investment in new clean coal technologies, today's coal based generating fleet is already 70% cleaner based on regulated emissions per unit of energy produced." It's probably true; coal plants are a lot more efficient and cleaner than they were in the seventies, when trees were dying and lakes were turning to vinegar.

The key word is regulated. Since the seventies, utilities have been forced to install pollution controls or switch to low sulfur coal to reduce smog and acid rain. Their own site says "The calculations are based on five pollutants: carbon monoxide, volatile organic compounds, sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxide and particulate matter."

Carbon Dioxide is not a regulated emission, so they can all but ignore it:


Watch the TV commercial here

"By relying on technology, we can do more. We can reduce emissions even further, to levels near zero for pollutants regulated by federal and state clean air laws. (then they toss in a bone-) We're also investing in the development and deployment of technologies to capture and store CO2- a greenhouse gas."

Message: CO2 is not dirty, is not a pollutant, is not an emission, and we're thinking about it. Did we mention that we are clean?

The ad people must have spent hours on the last line:

"Our commitment to clean is matched by a commitment to keep energy costs affordable and to protect our security by using our abundant domestic coal reserves to meet America's growing energy needs."

Cheap, secure, local fuel and lots of it! Just don't mention that climate change thing.

More greenwashing at AmericasPower.Org

Tags: Coal | Electricity | Greenwashing | Pollution