coal train

I read a lot of arguments about coal in a carbon-constrained world, given my, um, obsession with it, and I frequently run across these two claims, sometimes in the very same article:

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  1. There’s so much coal, and renewables are so far from competitive, that it’s not realistic to think we could live without it.
  2. Coal gasification is awesome, but it needs tons of subsidies. Coal liquefication is awesome, but it needs tons of subsidies. Carbon sequestration is awesome, but it needs tons of subsidies.

We can’t live without it, but it can’t survive without subsidies. Weird.

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