PacifiCorp’s Hunter coal fired power pant releases steam as it burns coal outside of Castle Dale, Utah on Nov. 14, 2019. Credit: George Frey/AFP via Getty Images What if President-elect Joe Biden’s plan to get to 100 percent carbon-free electricity by 2035 turns out to involve not radical disruption but a smooth transition? in the journal Science shows that most of the country’s existing coal, natural gas and oil power plants would be past the end of their expected lives by 2035, leaving only a small share that would need to close early under the Biden policy. Considering this, implementing the Biden plan “is probably easier than people expected,” said the author, Emily Grubert, an environmental engineering professor at Georgia Tech. By showing when the country’s fossil fuel power plants are on track to go offline, the report helps to signal to state and local governments when to prepare to deal with job losses. Most of those job losses would happen regardless of climate policy. “The overall takeaway is that we do have time to plan for this,” Grubert said. She looked at every one of the 10,435 generating units at power plants that were operating in 2018 and […]


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