Past Seminar

Clean Coal?: RFF First Wednesday Seminar

Feb 1, 2006

About the Event

Clean Coal
February 1, 2006
RFF First Wednesday Seminar

As Congress takes up the debate on how to ensure mine safety in the future, Resources for the Future steps back to examine coal's impact on the domestic and international energy situation. Five panelists address the future of coal, including implications of forecasted higher oil and gas prices, carbon capture and its effects on electricity generation costs, consideration of additional nuclear power as a possible option, the role of government in research and development, and China's coal industry, including environmental issues and worker safety.

Video and commentary on this First Wednesday Seminar follows below.


Phil Sharp
President, Resources for the Future






Joel Darmstadter​
Senior Fellow,
Resources for the Future

Since joining RFF in 1966, Joel Darmstadter has studied energy resources and policy. He has also focused on issues related to climate change, natural resource sustainability, and productivity in natural resource industries.





John M. Deutch
Institute Professor,
Massachusetts Institute of Technology

John Deutch has been a member of the MIT faculty since 1970 and has served as Chairman of the Department of Chemistry, Dean of Science, and Provost. He has published more than 160 technical publications in physical chemistry, as well as numerous publications on technology, energy, international security, and public policy issues.




David Hawkins
(Download Presentation)
Climate Center Director,
National Resource Defense Council

David Hawkins joined NRDC in 1971 and worked on air pollution issues until 1977, when he was appointed assistant administrator for Air, Noise, and Radiation at the Environmental Protection Agency in the Carter administration. He then returned to NRDC and has worked primarily on reauthorizing the Clean Air Act, including developing a national program to combat acid rain.



Mike Mosser
(Download Presentation)
Project and Portfolio Manager,
Mining Industries of the Future Program,
National Energy Technology Laboratory,
Department of Energy

The mining program, which Mike Mosser currently oversees, administers and manages a portfolio of 48 research and development projects focusing on energy efficiency and energy savings. Previously, during his 28 years experience in the coal industry, he developed, operated, and managed 12 surface/underground coal mines.




Edward S. Rubin
(Download Presentation)
Alumni Professor of Environmental Engineering and Science,
Carnegie Mellon University

Ed Rubin's teaching and research are in the areas of environmental
control, energy utilization, and technology-policy interactions, with a
particular focus on issues related to coal utilization. Also holding joint
appointments in the Department of Engineering and Public Policy and the
Department of Mechanical Engineering at CMU, he is the author of over
200 technical papers and reports.


Panel Question & Answer Session




Event Summary

Technology Alone Won't Cut CO2 Emissions, Panelists Warn

Technological innovation alone is unlikely to stop the rise in greenhouse gas emissions, several speakers warned at a Resources for the Future panel on February 1, 2006.

New technologies, they said, will not be developed and put into practice fast enough unless the process is forced forward by government rules that make these emissions expensive to the industries that cause them.

Worldwide coal consumption is rising steadily, and is a major source of carbon dioxide. The rising concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is apparently the principal cause of global warming. In all three of the world's leading consumers of coal -- in order, China, the United States and India -- there are no limits on emitting carbon dioxide into the sky. In economic terms, emissions are free.

John M. Deutch, institute professor at MIT, said that work under way at MIT indicates that t