The Decline of Big Coal

Bill Scher

The dead and trapped Crandall Canyon miners are putting renewed attention on the massive number of safety violations by Big Coal, and the gallingly lax enforcement by the Bush Administration.

But I also suspect that Robert Murray’s blustery, and ultimately ineffectual, attempt at crisis management PR will also weaken Big Coal’s efforts to defeat strong global warming legislation.

Of course, the safety of coal mining has nothing to do with the carbon pollution that comes from coal burning.

Yet as soon as disaster struck, and the media came, Murray sensed that the fate of the whole coal industry was on the line.

He started one of his first news conferences by defending the industry and lashing out at global warming legislation before updating the public on the status of the trapped miners:

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