Look up and see the Future: Coal fired B52s

The US Air Force is flying a B52 on fuel made from secure and local good old American King Coal. After all, "America has more coal than Saudi Arabia has oil." This gushy article from Reuters is all agog that "The planes of the future could be flown with liquid fuel made from coal or natural gas." Airline JetBlue's president says "America must reduce its dependence on foreign oil via environmentally sound and proven coal-to-liquid technologies,...Utilizing our domestic coal reserves is the right way to achieve energy independence." The generally reliable and impartial spokesman for the National Mining Association said " CTL transportation fuels are substantially cleaner-burning than conventional fuels." There is only one small problem: the process emits huge quantities of airborne, liquid, and solid wastes, consumes lots of water, uses twice as much energy making it as you get out of it. Coal to liquid is about mining coal to replace oil, at whatever the environmental cost. This B52 won't fly. ::Reuters

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