Whoa! The Dept. of Energy just announced that it’s yanking its support for FutureGen, the much-ballyhooed and much-delayed “clean coal” demonstration plant that greens refer to, never more appropriately, as NeverGen.

What’s behind the decision? “Ballooning costs.” But wait … I thought coal was cheap!?

UPDATE: Note that Senator Dick Durbin expresses great outrage and promises to appeal directly to the president, but there is, conspicuously, no comment from his fellow Ill. Senator Barack Obama. Both of them fought like hell to get the plant sited in Ill., but Obama has taken lumps from greens for supporting clean coal. I’ll be quite curious to see if he comes out with a public statement on this.

Grist thanks its sponsors. Become one.

Reader support helps sustain our work. Donate today to keep our climate news free. All donations DOUBLED!