Ban Coal: Super Cyclone half the Size of India driven by warming Waters

India should rethink plans to build more coal plants. The warming waters of the Indian ocean have thrown up a super-cyclone half the size of the subcontinent that is advancing on the country’s east coast with winds up to 167 miles per hour. Already 200,000 people have been evacuated.

While cyclones are not new in this area, massive and monstrous storms like this one, “Phailin’, are rare. They will become more common as the ocean waters warm up, since hurricanes and cyclones are fed by warm water.

India is planning to build more coal plants, which is national suicide. Much of Indian Bengal is barely above sea level and is under threat of being inundated. Global warming will likely cause seas to rise 3-4 feet in this century.

Humankind is performing a very dangerous experiment on its only planetary home, the equivalent of living in a tree house and sawing off the branch holding it up. We are assured by the saw manufacturers that it will float gently down to the forest floor and not crash. We are dumping over 30 billion metric tons of carbon dioxide annually into the atmosphere. CO2 is a greenhouse gas that traps the sun’s heat on earth and prevents it radiating back out into space. We are likely to see an average surface temperature rise of 9 degrees F in the next century if we go on like this. The implications are horrible for our grandchildren. But the real nightmare will hit their grandchildren.

Abandoning coal, oil and gas ASAP is the only hope to avert disaster. We could do it if the political will existed. Certainly, all coal plants could be closed down within 10 years, and that with relatively little economic pain. Coal is especially dirty and dangerous.

7 Responses

  1. Big Coal has as much of a hold on politicians as does the oil industry, and until their grip is pried off of the necks of Senators and Congressmen nothing will be done to restrict the use of coal here or in other nations. Alas, as Bill Moyers discusses this week, our Supreme Court – which has never met a powerful business interest it doesn’t worship – is unlikely to let stand the last shards of restrictions on the ability of money to buy elections.

    At least Pres. Obama stopped talking about “clean coal” because there is no such thing.

    Meanwhile, our environment is being destroyed and with it, mankind’s ability to survive.

    Thus, it’s appalling to watch the entire Canadian government – which comes as close as it can to denying climate change without sounding like the tinfoil hat crowd – is trying to shove its anti-environment policies down the necks of Americans.

    Natural Resources Minister Joe Oliver seems to spend more time in Washington and New York than he does in Ottawa in an effort to get the Keystone XL death funnel approved. Sounding more like Harold Hill than a minister of the Crown, Mr. Oliver simply lies about the polluting effects of drilling and refining Albert’s tar sands, blithely ignoring scientific warnings about the problems it will cause. Last week, he managed to trick 165 US executives into writing a letter to The White House proclaiming the pipeline’s virtues even as a massive leak in North Dakota ruined a farmer’s ability to grow wheat for perhaps a decade.

    When will the madness end?

    • No so much. Big Coal is getting its butt kicked, at least in the United States.

      The 150th coal-fired power plant was closed in the United States last week.

      link to dailykos.com

      There are currently zero new coal-fired power plants proposed for construction.

      Numerous regulations that hammer the coal industry have been passed under the Obama EPA, from Clean Air Act regulations on particulates, mercury/toxics, and smog precursors to Clean Water Act regulations on coal ash.

      At least in the US, coal is a dying industry. This is why the United States has achieved the world’s largest GHG reductions over the past five years. The fate of Big Coal in the U.S. is one of the environmental bright spots in the world today.

  2. OOps, You meant 30 BILLION tons annually.

    We are unfortunately still spending big bucks (over $600B annually) to extract more fossil fuels. Far more is currently being invested in making the problem worse, than it trying to solve it.

  3. While it is great fun to point at politicians, I’ve been reading climate change info for three decades. The reality is great masses of Americans don’t believe in human caused climate change. In fact, I rarely encounter an American
    that even understands climate change beyond “great we’ll have warmer winters”. Personally, I rarely encounter an American that knows much about anything beyond the indoctrination of Fox news.

    Right now there is a great cry re the disapproval rating of Congress. Know what, they will all be re-elected.

    Personally, I believe this is a direct consequence of an educational system that stopped functioning long ago. Americans are science illiterates or I should just say illiterate. If you can think at all, the teacher is severely threatened and subtle punishment will result. Mindless obedience is well rewarded with good grades, job promotions and the like. It’s all semantics now with a witless mass media goose stepping into the future. Enjoy!!

  4. I recently heard an interview in which it was mentioned that Ronald Reagan blew a big opportunity, when he smugly & gleefully had the Solar Panels on the roof of the White House – installed at Jimmy Carter’s behest…instead of supporting real research into solar and other alternative energy sources.

    The person interviewed wondered if we’d be facing this kind of intense weather if Reagan had made that choice. I don’t know if that’s a realistic assessment – but Reagan’s decision NOT to support alt energy surely has made our current situation much, much worse…

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