16 Sep 2008 05:09:55
Coal electricity risks bad reputation
Electricity companies which plan to build unabated coal-burning plants risk gaining a negative reputation similar to tobacco companies, warned the chair of the Sustainable Development Commission.
Sir Jonathan Porrit poured scorn on plans to continue using coal as a fuel.
The fuel, which emits 890 grams of carbon dioxide per kilowatt hour when burned to generate electricity is the dirtiest of all the sources of energy in the UK.
Natural gas causes 360 g/kWh and renewables have zero emissions.
E.On has plans to build two new coal-burning plants at Kingsnorth and Sir Johnathan warned that government approval would damage the cause of combating climate change.
"If this government does give planning permission for unabated coal at Kingsnorth, any pretentions for an integrated climate change policy will really disappear in front of our eyes," he told delegates at a Q&A at the Liberal Democrat party convention, reports New Energy Focus.
Liberal MEP Chris Davies, said that the approval of such projects could endanger attempts to secure an international deal on emissions that would follow up the Kyoto Protocol.