Coal plant costs: higher and higher as the atmosphere gets dirtier and dirtier

Not only is "clean coal" dirty, it will only get more expensive.

In the wake of debate over the “Climate Security Act” on the Senate floor one topic stood out clearly - the economic implications of climate change and related regulation. At the same time the International Energy Agency called for aggressive investment in a new clean energy economy one of the leading energy publications in the world - Platts - described the economic challenges facing any new investment in generation.

Most shocking about the Platts report was its analysis of how high the cost of power from coal plants will climb under carbon regulations like the “Climate Security Act.” The scare mongers of rising energy prices and economic disaster are really talking about the increasing cost of power from the dirtiest fuel, coal, according to Platts:


“A key cost driver is coal for power generation, which rises between 161% and 413% in 2020 and between 305% and 804% in 2030, under the EIA forecast.”

The cost of power from a new coal plant could be 4 times higher in just 10 years and 8 times higher by 2030.


Have you ever heard a utility executive pushing a new coal plant tell you that they’re building a new coal plant because they want your electricity bill to increase by 300% to 800% in the next two decades? Yet that’s exactly what they’re trying to lock in by building a new generation of dirty coal plants.

The cheapest, cleanest, and best way to meet future energy demands is through a massive investment in energy efficiency. The cost of new generation of every kind is climbing, but nothing is projected to rise as high as coal under a carbon constraint. It is time for the climate obstructionists and deniers in the Senate to get serious about the economic disaster they claim is looming and call for a ‘time out’ on building new coal plants. The real economic disaster is more inaction on global warming by our government, utilities, and coal companies, which will cost us far more than just solving the problem.