As Goes Nevada, So Goes The Planet: Three Lumps Of Coal On The Slots Machine


Nevada doesn't want a nuclear repository; and, it probably won't be made to have one any time soon. US nuclear industry expansion plans are hostage to the lack of a Federally permitted waste management option. Everyone gets that.

But, why worry when there's coal? The Americans for Balanced Energy Choices [astroturf group], wants Nevada to meet it's huge projected energy demand with coal.

"...Nevada is once again the fastest-growing state in the nation. Since 2000, the population of Nevada has grown 25 percent, four times the national average. Today, Nevada electricity consumption is growing 230 percent faster than the rest of the country. The U.S. Department of Energy estimates Nevada will double its electricity consumption every six to seven years. It is critical that coal remains part of Nevada's energy portfolio to meet this growing demand for electricity for a growing population -- and do it affordably.
These people know how to throw a party. As Christmas season of 2007 approached it was reported that:
Americans for Balanced Energy Choices (ABEC) is sending 30 Santas to Capitol Hill on Wednesday to deliver stockings filled with coal-shaped chocolate.

And they have plenty of astroturf gumbo to serve up for the election.
The National Journal recently reported that the organization’s [ABEC's] budget will go from $8 million in 2007 to about $30 million in 2008, most of which will pay for outreach and advertising campaigns nationally, and in Nevada and Pennsylvania in particular.

There's a US presidential primary vote going on in Nevada. When in Las Vegas, which candidate gets the most attention from Big Coal? Looks like a "bi-partisan" shindig.

The Nevada coal party has already "gotten off on the wrong foot," however. ABEC pulled the lever on the PR slots; and, instead of three cherries, up came three lumps of coal - and they weren't any chocolate lumps either. This just in. How embarrassing.

CARSON CITY, Nev. (AP) - Sierra Pacific Power Co. asked Nevada regulators for authority to collect $42 million from ratepayers for a clean-coal generating experiment that failed — but opponents said Friday the request should be denied and the utility should refund $50 million it already got...

...More than half of the funding for the Pinon Pine gasified coal project came from the federal Department of Energy. That agency's records show it's a prime example of investments of public funds in failed alternative energy ventures around the nation.

Construction on the Pinon Pine project, part of the utility's Tracy power station east of Reno, began in early 1995. The project, plagued by cost overruns, came on line in late 1996 — but as a conventional, gas-fired power plant. The experimental gasified coal system was shut down. Total costs for the entire plant ran more than $340 million.

TreeHugger comment: last we looked numerous wind farms and large scale thermal solar plants were doing just fine as renewable energy investments go - no "prime example of investments of public funds in failed alternative energy ventures" for non-coal alternatives.

See also: Greenwash Watch: AmericasPower

Via::PR Newswire, "Americans for Balanced Energy Choices Statement Regarding NDEP Hearing in Ely" AND The Hill, "Lump of coal a good thing, group believes" AND Las Vegas Sun Politics, "Industry’s new push: Rethink and embrace coal" AND Canadian Business, "Regulators Review Failed Nevada Utility Project" Image credit::Earth Patrol Media, Mirage Casino - "Revolution"