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King Coal Threatens Colorado Canyons, Increases Climate Change

The news on climate change is coming thick and fast these days. Over the weekend, news reports stated scientific studies showed global warming accelerating faster than predicted.  Tuesday, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) agreed to take a second look at regulating CO2 from coal-fired power plants as a pollutant, signaling a 180 from the Bush administration's do-nothing approach. Here in Colorado, the big news was President Obama signing the nearly $800 billion stimulus legislation after touring the new solar panel installation on top of Denver's Museum of Nature and Science.

But while the dangers of climate change and the new energy economy take center stage here, the old, 19th century energy economy is still humming along. The federal Bureau of Land Management (BLM) is getting ready to approve the giant new Red Cliff mine in western Colorado. This new mine will be a quadruple whammy for the environment: destroying wildlife habitat, degrading proposed wilderness, feeding our addiction to a dirty energy source for our power plants, and unnecessarily spewing into the air millions of cubic feet of methane -- a greenhouse gas more than 20 times as powerful as CO2. 

The public has until March 17th to submit comments urging the BLM to deep-six the mine or at least take the required hard look at the mine's impact. Email comments to the BLM's Glenn Wallace at

Tags:  coal, public lands

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