Texans rally to stop coal-fired power plants

Some 1,000 fired-up citizens gathered at the Texas Capitol on Sunday to oppose proposals for up to 18 new coal-fired power plants in the state. The protest, organized by about 40 environmental and health groups, attracted greens, businessfolk, and people who like breathing. Much ire has been focused on energy giant TXU, which has a $10 billion proposal to build 11 plants, more than doubling its carbon dioxide emissions to 133 million tons annually. TXU has sent free kiss-ass breakfast tacos to legislators and told the public that new coal plants would burn 80 percent cleaner than current ones, but activist Paul Rolke is not convinced. “Twenty years from now, we’ll look back and say, ‘Geez, why did we build a bunch of century-before-last technology when we were right on the cusp of a better way to make electricity?’” he says. A regulatory hearing for TXU’s permits will be held later this month, and state legislators will soon meet to consider a temporary coal-plant moratorium.