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The Chicken Littles of Power Production predictably predict doom

There is a move afoot for the EPA to require a 30 % reduction in carbon pollution from 2005 levels in power production. This is a timid rule as most electrical power producers have already reduced carbon pollution by about 15% against this 2030 goal. Their pollution reductions have been driven by the old maxim of business to reduce costs in the interest of profits, in this case from coal to natural gas and similar more cost effective production methods. This drive for more profits have been a major factor in the plummeting numbers of coal miners.

One has to watch only one coal country child coughing his guts out, wheezing in asthmatic pain, to know the reductions in polluting airborne carbons will be a boon to youngsters throughout their lives. Children and the elderly and the poor are the most affected by carbon pollution while all people will realize the benefits of cleaner air. Even a small downward tick in the level of pollution stands to pay back in reduced health care costs and longer lives for many.

There has been much caterwauling in power production literature and other media that there will be massive increases in electrical bills, always dragging out the specter famously uttered by "Chicken Little"----"the sky is falling, the sky is falling." All this unrepentent trickery is reminiscent of the car industry reaction when miles per gallon goals were established. We all know the automobile improved while meeting MPG goals.

In addition to benefits in health and longevity, the EPA estimates electricity bills will be reduced by roughly 8% by the year 2030 when the 30% carbon reduction will be realized. A reduction is a far cry from "the sky is falling."




Gene Nettles


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