Edwards Calls for Halt on Coal Plants

John Edwards called for a halt on coal-fired power plants in Marshalltown, where a proposed $1 billion, 600 mw coal-fired power plant is being proposed by Alliant Energy. 

Edwards said…

…we need to use coal sequestration technology and not build anymore coal plants until this technology is available.

I assumed Edwards was not informed about the proposed power plant in town when I first heard this comment. However, after the event, I overheard a local reporter ask if Edwards was aware of Alliant's proposed coal-fired power plant. Edwards said he doesn't believe in changing his position based on what town he is speaking in. This makes me think Edwards knew about the plant was once again taking a principled stand on the issue.

Edward's answer came on a question about high gas prices and requiring oil companies to invest excess profits into building new refineries. Edwards used to the question to lay out his plan to curb carbon emmissions and he threw in there the comment about putting a halt on coal plants until the coal sequesteration techonolgy is available.

The Marshalltown Times Republican wrote about Edwards's comment  about coal plants in their coverage of the event.

The leading Democratic candidate in Iowa also spoke of the need for carbon emission controls and reducing greenhouse gasses. Right now, he said there is no effective way to control carbon emissions on an industrial scale.

“My view is we should not be building any more coal-fired power plants until that is done,” he said.

That sent murmurings through the crowd, as many realized that Alliant Energy had just a few months ago announced the construction of a $1 billion coal-fired power plant on Marshalltown’s east side. While Edwards may not have heard what the mutterings were about specifically, he did acknowledge he had caught people’s attention.

“I can hear you guys talking,” he said.

I don't remember hearing Edwards say that he heard the audience talking, but then again I was busy liveblogging the event and might have missed it.

I could not find any mention of the comment in other papers.

Originally posted at Century of the Common Iowan

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  • the sequestration technology is unlikely to be there

    The only reason we're even talking about it is that we keep pouring government subsidies into coal. I totally agree that we need to freeze any new investment in coal.

    Incidentally, I would be shocked if Edwards hadn't been briefed on the plans for that new coal plant.