Researched by Kerry Headley and Jenny Gibson
Environmentalists blame ties between Big Coal and Congress for votes issued against bills promoting sustainable energy sources. Appalachian Voices and Oil Change International reveal that each of the top five (and nine of the top 10) recipients of coal industry money in the Senate voted against a bill promoting solar energy. Additionally, only five of the 30 top recipients of coal money in the US House signed on to a bill intended to end most mountaintop removal coal mining by prohibiting the dumping of mining waste into streams. Furthermore, the mortgage banking bailout bill contained $2.5 million in loan guarantees to fund so-called “clean coal” technology. Both former Vice President Al Gore and the Rainforest Action Network have stated that there is no such thing as clean coal and noted that coal is the largest and fastest growing source of greenhouse gas emissions on the planet. Yet as the American public demands a shift from polluting and nonrenewable fuel sources, compromised politicians continue to hand out $49 billion in annual taxpayer-funded subsidies to the fossil fuel industry.
“Can Coal Be Clean? A Debate Between Michael Brune of Rainforest Action Network and Joe Lucas of American Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity” Democracy Now!, 10/7/2008 http://www.democracynow.org/2008/10/7/can_coal_be_clean_a_debate
“Follow the Coal Money” Michael Brune, Huffington Post, 8/18/2008 http://www.huffingtonpost.com/michael-brune/follow-the-coal-money_b_118821.html