A massive loophole in Maryland's renewable energy law is forcing ratepayers to reward the creation of greenhouse gases and harmful air pollutants. In the 2014 General Assembly, the Renewable Energy Portfolio Standard - Qualifying Biomass bill (SB 734/HB 747) would eliminate that loophole to ensure that Maryland's clean energy is actually clean.
The wind blowing off Maryland's Atlantic coast is a vast, untapped energy source. Offshore wind has the power to provide clean energy, create local jobs, establish long-term electric price stability, and produce the equivalent of two thirds of Maryland's current electricity needs. Finally, Maryland is on the way to tapping our homegrown, clean source of energy.
The clock is ticking: The gas industry is targeting Maryland as the next place to bring dangerous fracking and, on August 1st, 2014, our state’s temporary protections against this high-risk form of gas drilling will expire.
The legislature must act now to pass a statutory moratorium on fracking. Our communities deserve guaranteed protections from the widespread harm already linked to fracking in neighboring states – including contaminated drinking water, air pollution, earthquakes, adverse health impacts, and worsening climate change.
There are 18 coal-fired power plants in Maryland, generating about 40 percent of the state's electricity. Coal is the dirtiest fossil fuel. It destroys the health of our air, water and climate from the mining of coal through mountaintop removal in Appalachia, to its transport and burning at power plants, to the toxic waste it leaves behind in the form of coal ash. The lifecycle of coal pollution has been linked many health problems, including asthma, lung cancer, heart disease, stroke, and neurological damage.
CCAN is fighting on all fronts to move beyond coal. We are pushing for stronger pollution controls in coal mining, transport, processing and export facility permits, pushing for the strongest standards to clean up coal ash dumps, and finally shutting down plants to reduce the amount of coal burned in the state. Click here to learn more about our work to stop the surge of coal exports from the East Coast.
In 2012, CCAN and EIP celebrated our first major victory in the fight against dirty power plants in Maryland when First Energy shut down the R. Paul Smith coal-fired power plant in Williamsport, MD.
Although waste incinerators have been touted as a renewable energy solution by politicians, the facts tell a different story. Waste-to-energy incinerators emit high levels of mercury pollution and ultra-fine particulate matter, one of the most dangerous known pollutants to human health. They are also terrible for the climate: Trash-burning emits more carbon dioxide per unit of energy produced than does burning coal. CCAN is currently fighting two proposed waste-to-energy incinerators in Maryland.