Half a Coal Plant Not Half Bad (But We're Not Stopping Yet)

Today the North Carolina Utilities Commission permitted only one of Duke Energy company's two proposed 800 megawatt units at their Cliffside coal plant near Charlotte -- an outcome that the environmental community should applaud -- but with a one handed clap. The decision shows appropriate caution at a time when the threats of global climate change loom ever larger. Building new coal plants without carbon controls, like Cliffside, certainly finds many foes. The rush to bring new coal online is being called "foolish" by leading climate scientists like NASA's James Hansen, and most scientists agree that greenhouse gas emissions must be stabilized then reduced within the next decade.

Due to your letters, emails and testimonies, however, North Carolina is at least a half a step closer to a cleaner energy future. We'll look to you again as this debate continues to help us make a real quantum leap.

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