The wild year that was 2008 is coming to its uncertain conclusion, and now is the time media publications let loose a flood of year-end lists. (Presumably so some journalists can take vacations.) Time Magazine has one such list: 10 Green Stories. While we don’t want to spoil the ranking, the inclusion of a little-known decision on coal makes this one worth noting.
“Dirty, cheap coal provides 49% of the electricity in the U.S. and 30% of the country's carbon emissions — which means that if the more than 100 new coal plants currently in the development pipeline get built, the planet is doomed to get warmer
. That's what made a decision on Nov. 13 by an obscure appeals board at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) so important. Responding to a lawsuit filed by the Sierra Club over a new coal plant being built in Utah, the board ruled that the EPA had no grounds to refuse to regulate the CO2 emitted by new coal plants. Immediately, that made it virtually impossible for the EPA to certify any new coal plant, freezing development. In the long term, it gives the incoming Obama Administration an opening to force the coal industry to clean up — or shut down.”
Full list here
DTE will begin to compile their 2008 bests with a nod to what’s next. Get ready. Perhaps a mini-vacation is in the works too.)