What’s a ‘clean coal energy campus?’

santeecooper

Lucky South Carolina! We could shortly have a “clean coal energy campus” right here in the Palmetto State.

At least, that’s what a guest columnist called the coal power plant that’s been proposed for the state’s Pee Dee region.

Hogan Gridley, the executive director of an organization called South Carolina Action for Jobs, authored the “Coal campus would bring needed jobs” op-ed that appeared in The State Wednesday, and termed the coal-fired plant that utility Santee Cooper wants to build a “clean coal energy campus.”

The piece is a non-too-transparent attempt to generate some positive PR for the proposed plant, which has drawn the ire of environmentalists.

Santee Cooper, which wants to build the 600-megawatt plant near the town of Kingsburg in Florence County, said it needs the plant by 2012 or its customers could face brownouts and blackouts.

Regardless of whether the plant is good for South Carolina or not – and one suspects that given the state’s surging population and ever-increasing energy demands, it’s a necessary project – to call it a “clean coal energy campus” is ridiculous.

It’s a coal plant. Its purpose is to burn coal in order to produce energy, plain and simple.

Presenting an issue or cause in a positive light is all part of the public relations game, but when someone trots out an elaborate euphenism like “clean coal energy campus” it makes one wonder what’s really going on.

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