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The Environmental Challenges of Power Generation

In two decades, three momentous changes have occurred that will influence power generation for decades to come. Coal has become a culprit responsible for respiratory disease and acid rain; carbon dioxide has become a culprit widely believed capable of changes in climate greater than any that have occurred in ten thousand years; and nuclear power in many countries has become an outcast. The irony is that nuclear power promised clean air and no greenhouse effect. The great gathering of heads of state in Rio in 1992 was the celebration of a problem; whether it was the beginning of a solution remains to be seen.

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Energy Specializations: Electricity – Generation Technologies; Electricity – Policy and Regulation; Energy and the Environment – Climate Change and Greenhouse Gases; Energy and the Environment – Policy and Regulation

JEL Codes:
Q2 -
E60 - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook: General
Q54 - Climate; Natural Disasters and Their Management; Global Warming

Keywords: Electricity generation, environmental policy, greenhouse gases, coal, regulation

DOI: 10.5547/ISSN0195-6574-EJ-Vol19-No2-6

Published in Volume19, Number 2 of The Quarterly Journal of the IAEE's Energy Economics Education Foundation.