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Entries by Bruce Nilles

As the Climate Warms, U.S. Hits 120 Coal Plants Heading to Retirement

(13) Comments | Posted August 29, 2012 | 12:55 PM

Earlier this month I was invited to hear the latest on climate science from one of my heroes, Dr. Jim Hansen at NASA. He methodically showed that in the past decade the number of extreme weather episodes could only be explained by a warming planet.

At this point, we...

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A Good Move for Wind

(10) Comments | Posted July 9, 2012 | 11:47 AM

As we continue to retire aging dirty coal plant after aging dirty coal plant nationwide (we just hit 112 coal plants secured to retire), we are also pushing hard to replace them with clean energy, and as little natural as possible. That's why we were excited this week to see...

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Last Chance to Tell EPA We Want Strong Coal Ash Safeguards

(0) Comments | Posted November 18, 2010 | 2:12 PM

The comment period ends tomorrow for the Environmental Protection Agency's proposed federal safeguards for toxic coal ash.

Coal ash is the by-product of burning coal for electricity, and it contains a toxic mix of chemicals: mercury, arsenic, lead, chromium, selenium, and more.

We've been calling for...

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New Coal Ash Hotline and Video

(0) Comments | Posted November 11, 2010 | 2:32 PM

The comment period for the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) proposed coal ash safeguards is winding down, with the deadline being next Friday, Nov. 19th. (Have you submitted your comment yet?)

But just because the deadline is approaching does not mean we're slowing our action on coal...

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Why is the U.S. Helping Finance Fossil Fuels Overseas?

(0) Comments | Posted November 10, 2010 | 2:42 PM

This post was co-written by Justin Guay of the Sierra Club International Climate Program.

In a blog post this week, United States Export-Import Bank President Fred Hochberg paints a rosy picture of future trade relations between the United States and key emerging markets such as India...

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Coal Industry Continues Its Shady Practices

(6) Comments | Posted November 4, 2010 | 3:49 PM

My colleague said it well yesterday in his response to Tuesday's election results -- we will not cede our future to polluters, who again poured tens of millions of dollars into various campaigns.

No surprise here, the coal industry is part of those polluters throwing money around...

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Texas' Fight Against Coal and Coal Ash

(0) Comments | Posted October 28, 2010 | 2:19 PM

This is the latest in our series of community coal ash profiles. This piece was written by Sierra Club Apprentice Sari Ancel.

Here's lovely daydream if you're from southeast Texas: It's a warm fall afternoon and you're out fishing on the banks of the Colorado River, listening to the...

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One More Thing to Worry About in Middle School - Energy Regulations?

(0) Comments | Posted October 22, 2010 | 12:57 PM

Mary Anne Hitt, the director of the Sierra Club Beyond Coal Campaign, is a new mom and has some words for those trying to greenwash schoolkids and college students:

As a new mom, I'm paying more attention these days to how big companies are trying...

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The Aftermath of the TVA Coal Ash Disaster

(0) Comments | Posted October 21, 2010 | 2:47 PM

This is the latest in our series of community coal ash profiles. This was written by Sierra Club Apprentice Philip Hawes.

Tennessee's Emory River has long been treasured for its natural beauty.

In 1867, when a young man by the name of John Muir decided...

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EPA Recommends Protecting Clean Water by Rejecting Giant WV Coal Mine

(8) Comments | Posted October 15, 2010 | 2:48 PM

Hot off the presses: EPA just announced it is recommending rejecting the massive Spruce Mine in Logan County, West Virginia, for the simple reason that it can't comply with long-standing clean water protections. EPA Region 3 and Administrator Shawn Garvin recommended that the permit for Spruce be withdrawn (read...

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Coping with Coal Ash's Health Effects

(0) Comments | Posted October 14, 2010 | 12:48 PM

This is the latest in our series of community coal ash profiles. This piece was written by Sierra Club Apprentice Lydia Avila.

The community of Joliet, Illinois, identifies as many things - Midwestern, humble, and hard-working. Yet they also identify with something much less positive: being collateral damage. According...

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Oklahoma Town Fights Coal Ash

(6) Comments | Posted October 7, 2010 | 1:38 PM

This post is the latest in our series of community coal ash profiles. It was written by Sierra Club Apprentice Flavia de la Fuente.

When a company named Making Money, Having Fun LLC (how's that for Orwellian?) applied for a permit for a commercial disposal facility to dump...

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Peabody Coal's Plan to Save the World... or Itself

(2) Comments | Posted October 6, 2010 | 1:54 PM

The coal industry is a filthy business, but that doesn't stop the industry from spending a fortune on PR consultants to distract attention away from the costs it imposes on Americans every day. With labels like "clean coal" and "green coal," the coal industry's spinsters spend a lot of time...

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A Big Coal Ash Problem At Little Blue

(0) Comments | Posted September 30, 2010 | 1:53 PM

This post is the latest in our series of coal ash community profiles. Our work on coal ash unfortunately becomes timely yet again, as news came out this week of a breach at a coal ash impoundment in North Carolina. This week's profile was written by Sierra Club...

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A Kentucky Community Surrounded by Coal Ash

(0) Comments | Posted September 24, 2010 | 12:44 PM

This week's Bruce Nilles column is another guest one. This week's coal ash community profile was written by Elizabeth Irvin, a Sierra Club Apprentice.

For one weekend each year in early May, Louisville, Kentucky, boasts an abnormally high concentration of horses, jockeys, mint juleps, and elaborate hats. Less than ten...

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Threat Remains Despite VA Coal Plant Delay

(0) Comments | Posted September 16, 2010 | 12:41 PM

This week's coal ash community profile post was written by Gabriel DeRita, a Sierra Club Communications Apprentice. Also, follow today's EPA coal ash public hearing in Chicago via our @SierraClubLive and @SierraClubIL Twitter accounts.

The area around Surry County, Virginia, is already home to some sinister projects,...

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New Coal Ash Video and Facebook App Aim to Educate, Engage

(0) Comments | Posted September 14, 2010 | 2:42 PM

You've seen our push against toxic coal ash continue over the past few months as the Environmental Protection Agency seeks public comment on how to regulate coal ash. Our push continues this week with the unveiling of a new coal ash video we produced and a Facebook application. Take...

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Coal Ash, A Rancher's View

(0) Comments | Posted September 9, 2010 | 12:17 PM

The Environmental Protection Agency is in the middle of a series of public hearings at sites around the country to gather input on new protections from toxic coal ash. This week's blog...

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Fighting Coal Ash, Bureaucracy and Confusion

(0) Comments | Posted September 2, 2010 | 5:16 PM

As I have mentioned on this blog before, the Environmental Protection Agency is currently holding public hearings at sites around the country to hear your input on draft regulations for the disposal of toxic coal ash. This week's blog post comes from Sierra Student Coalition Apprentice Margaret Hoerath, who writes...

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New Report Reveals Widespread Toxic Coal Ash Contamination

(0) Comments | Posted August 27, 2010 | 11:26 AM

Power industry lobbyist Jim Roewer: "Wasn't a problem."

Leslie Stahl: "Well, it was a problem, but we just didn't know it."

This excerpt from a recent 60 Minutes story on toxic coal waste sums up the current trouble with the millions of tons of toxic ash left over each...

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