Beckwith, over at Under the Dome, jumps to defend the N&O’s unsubstantiated assertion that "Coal-fired power plants are the primary contributors to global warming."
First, to be fair, journalists are not scientists. So Beckwith and N&O must have really meant ‘coal fired power plants are the primary contributors to anthropogenic climate change (ACC)". Otherwise, the sun would be the primary contributor to warming. (Water vapor doesn’t help either.)
Second, Beckwith and Co. have probably accepted the so-called "consensus" premise that ACC – not natural climate variability – is the primary source of warming, despite evidence that it’s not. This consensus is made up primarily of well-subsidized bureaucrats and climate-modelers, not independent climatologists such as Richard Lindzen, Tim Ball, and Roy Spencer. I’ll pass over the fact that there were no coal-fired power plants during the medieval warm period.
Finally, if the assertion is that "coal-fired plants give off the most CO2" does the N&O mean on aggregate, or by some per unit measure? It’s not clear. In any case, this selective data/policy-of-omission/speculation-as-fact type of journalism is sadly the norm these days. Global warming is sexy. Stories about evil power companies, too, are sexy. (Ironically, Progress Energy supports carbon taxation, but that’s another story for another day.)
But I guess we can forgive the Dome in taking up for their own. They should be careful, however. They are the gatekeepers of information. And that comes with heavy responsibility.