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Statewide View Column: Closing Down Coal Gives China’s, India’s Iron Industries An Edge

The following article was written by me, and it originally appeared in the Duluth News Tribune. Xcel Energy recently made headlines by announcing it wished to close down its coal-fired power plants 10 years before they were previously scheduled to retire. However, it would be nothing short of a disaster for Minnesota’s mining industry, both present and future, if Minnesota Power pursued a similar path by closing the coal-fired Boswell Energy Center at a time when China and India are greatly expanding their use of coal. Mining requires an enormous amount of energy. In fact, the MinnTac mine in Mountain Iron reportedly...

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Global CO2 Emissions To Skyrocket As India Plans To Build 42 Shercos in the Coming Years

During the legislative session, we heard Governor Walz, House DFL members, and liberal environmentalists call climate change an "existential crisis," several times (give or take a million). This so-called crisis was used as justification for trying to pass radical Green New Deal-style legislation in Minnesota in an attempt to dramatically reduce carbon dioxide emissions. Absent from these discussions, however, was any context for global carbon dioxide emissions and the impact they will have on future temperatures. This seems like a massive oversight. It's called global warming, after all. The most likely reason this discussion never occurred is because it would undermine the Governor's case...

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China: No Wind Or Solar If It Can’t Beat Coal On Price

Solar advocates often emphasize the fact that the cost of solar panels has fallen about 80 percent in the last ten years, and use this cost decline to project even steeper cost declines in the future. However, this is a problematic assumption because the recent decrease is only partially due to improvements in the solar panels. The other reason the cost of solar panels fell is because China became a major producer of solar panels, lowering the cost of production. One reason why China became a major producer of solar panels is because it subsidizes many of its industries, including steel...

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