Earlier today, we linked to a story detailing the coal industry’s precarious position.
Here’s one more coal story for the road: Slate takes a look at the political implications of the shift away from coal, and what it means for the presidential campaign:
Are the coal states red or blue? Mitt Romney’s presidential campaign is working hard to convince voters in key swing states that also produce coal—Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Virginia—that the Obama administration is anti-coal.*That shouldn’t be a difficult task. In late March, the EPA proposed a rule that could prevent the construction of new coal-fired power plants in the United States. (Public comment on that rule ends on June 12.) That move was cheered by the Sierra Club and other environmental groups that are pushing their “beyond coal” campaign.
But here’s the reality: Whatever happens in the presidential election won’t matter much to the booming global coal market. Furthermore, it will have almost no effect on soaring global carbon dioxide emissions, which have increased by about 28 percent over the past decade.