A wealth of information is available on the topics of coal-fired power generation, the use of coal as a fuel, and climate change mitigation. Below are reliable resources that cover these topics in greater detail.
EPA – The Environmental Protection Agency leads the nation’s environmental science, research, education and assessment efforts. The EPA’s mission is to protect human health and the environment. This site reviews the Clean Air Act, a comprehensive federal law that regulates air emissions from stationary and mobile sources. This law authorizes EPA to establish standards to protect public health and to regulate emissions of hazardous air pollutants. Here you can also find information on the Acid Rain Program, including how it works and how emissions are tracked.
MIT – The Carbon Capture and Sequestration Technologies Program at MIT was formed in 1989 and conducts research into technologies to capture, utilize, and store CO2 from large stationary sources. Another excellent MIT resource is its Future of Coal study. This 2007 study examines the role of coal in a carbon-constrained world, evaluating the technologies and costs of coal-based electricity generation including carbon capture and sequestration. In 2009, the MIT Energy Initiative released a report entitled, Retrofitting of Coal-Fired Power Plants for CO2 Emissions Reductions. The report identifies potential next steps for policy makers, industry, and others engaged in CO2 emissions reduction.
IEA – The International Energy Agency is an intergovernmental energy policy advisor to 28 member countries to ensure reliable, affordable and clean energy for their citizens. The IEA’s role incorporates energy security, economic development and environmental protection to ensure balanced energy policy making. It currently focuses on climate change policies, market reform, energy technology collaboration, and outreach, especially for major consumers and producers of energy like China, India, Russia and the OPEC countries. Its annual World Energy Outlook is one of the most valuable sources for global energy analysis and projections. In 2008, the IEA released two particularly noteworthy reports—CO2 Capture and Storage: A Key Carbon Abatement Option and Energy Technology Perspectives 2008: Scenarios and Strategies to 2050.
IPCC – The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change is a scientific intergovernmental body set up by the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). It was established to provide decision-makers and others with an objective source of climate change information. The IPCC does not conduct research or monitor climate related data. It assesses on a comprehensive, objective, open and transparent basis the latest worldwide scientific, technical and socio-economic literature relevant to the understanding of human-induced climate change. IPCC released its Climate Change: 2007 report, the summary of which is available on its website.
Pew Center – The Pew Center on Global Climate Change is a non-profit, non-partisan, and independent organization dedicated to providing credible information, direct answers, and innovative solutions in the effort to address global climate change. The Pew Center is led by Eileen Claussen, the former U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for Oceans and International Environmental and Scientific Affairs. This site features a particularly useful section on global warming basics for those who are relatively new to climate change science, as well as a report highlighting the Key Scientific Developments Since the IPCC Fourth Assessment Report.
DOE – Part of the Department of Energy’s mission is to advance the United States’ national, economic, and energy security and to promote scientific and technological innovation in support of that mission. The National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL) is part of DOE’s national laboratory system and it supports DOE’s mission by implementing energy and environmental R&D programs that will enable the U.S. to use domestic coal, natural gas, and oil while protecting our environment and enhancing our energy independence. NETL has expertise in fossil fuel technologies, analysis of energy systems, and international energy issues. Through its regional carbon sequestration partnerships, the DOE is overseeing pilot- and large-scale sequestration programs.
EIA – As part of the U.S. Department of Energy, the Energy Information Administration provides policy-neutral data, forecasts, and analyses to promote sound policy making, efficient markets, and public understanding regarding energy and its interaction with the economy and the environment. Its Electric Power Annual presents electric power industry statistics at national, regional, and state levels. The site is also an informative resource on greenhouse gases, climate change, and energy.
WCI – The World Coal Institute is a non-profit, non-governmental organization of coal enterprises and associations. It is the only international body working on a worldwide basis on behalf of the coal industry and its site contains useful information on coal, statistics, and CCS.
ICAC – The Institute of Clean Air Companies is the national association of companies that supply air pollution monitoring and control systems, equipment, and services for stationary sources. Among its helpful resources, the ICAC web site provides brief descriptions of air pollution control technologies, case studies, position papers, and a buyers guide.
EPRI – The Electric Power Research Institute is an independent, nonprofit organization that conducts research and development relating to the generation, delivery and use of electricity for the benefit of the public. It brings together scientists, engineers, and academia and industry experts to address challenges in electricity, including reliability, efficiency, health, safety and the environment. EPRI also provides technology, policy and economic analyses to drive long-range R&D planning, and supports research in emerging technologies. EPRI’s members represent more than 90 percent of the electricity generated and delivered in the U.S., and 40 countries.