11/26/2013 07:00 pm ET Updated Jan 26, 2014

Help Us Stop Coal

Carbon pollution has penetrated the highest levels of our justice system: the Supreme Court has ruled that carbon is a greenhouse gas pollutant that must be regulated by the EPA. Common sense.

That isn't stopping Dirty Coal interests from fighting EPA every step of the way. Senator Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Rep Ed Whitfield of Kentucky have proposed legislation to block EPA from regulating carbon pollution from coal-fired power plants.

It is a mistake to see this as a coal plant versus EPA fight. This is now Coal versus Humankind: cynical, irresponsible, short-sighted. Immoral, at heart.

Our climate is changing, rapidly. Climate scientists worldwide are ringing alarm bells. People are suffering from floods, droughts, winds and storms of record-breaking proportions. And the use of coal -- down in the US for now, while natural gas prices are still low -- is sky-rocketing around the world. That's why regulations on carbon pollution here -- and the development of technologies to clean up coal -- are so important.

I've been thinking about how climate change may be too big a problem for democracy to tackle. When a doctor tells you cancer is invading your body, you don't take votes about whether it is real or not. We have a global mess that is spinning out of control. We are in a race against time. But our politicians are dithering -- and that is harming our reputation as leaders. We will regret this, profoundly, in years to come. Our children will never understand why we didn't act when we had the time to contain the problem.

Right now we have to do the only thing we can: chip away at this disaster with all the tools we have -- regulatory, economic, technological and spiritual! It is time to scrub coal -- and get the country using clean renewable energy as fast as possible. Dirty Coal is making a big mistake in refusing to clean up.