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Journal Article: How to Phase out CO2 Emissions from Coal by 2030

May 21, 2010

A new journal article urges aggressive implementation of current and developing technology to rapidly reduce carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from coal burning power plants in the United States. Such measures and others are urgently needed, the authors contend, because of new climate research showing that atmospheric CO2 levels are more dangerous than previously thought.

Preserving the planet as we know it, the authors say, will require the United States to lead the world by example and "rapidly phase out coal emissions and prohibit emissions from unconventional fossil fuels such as oil shale and tar sands."

In addition to eliminating such emissions, the authors call for changing the combination of technologies used to produce electricity, including more energy efficiency and renewable energy generation, further development and implementation of a "smart grid", and advanced nuclear power.

The peer-reviewed article was co-authored by Pushker A. Kharecha, of the NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies & Columbia University Earth Institute in New York; Charles F. Kutscher, of the National Renewable Energy Laboratory in Golden, Colorado; James E. Hansen, also from the NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies & Columbia University Earth Institute; and Edward Mazria, of 2030 Inc./Architecture 2030 in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

Read the article and related news story published by the American Chemical Society's  Environmental Science & Technology.  Both pieces are scheduled to be printed in the June 1 issue of the journal.


—Karen Atkison