New York City’s former mayor, Michael Bloomberg is investing $500 million in order to shut down all remaining coal plants in the country by 2030, which will put the United States on the right track towards a full 100% clean energy economy in the next ten years.
During his commencement speech in the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Bloomberg discussed his plan to the students, telling MIT’s class of 2019, “climate change is now first and foremost a political problem, not a scientific quandary or even a technological puzzle.”
He also mentioned that he would work with different states and utilities to close down “every last U.S. coal-fired power plant by 2030. We’re already more than halfway there.”
He believes this goal is achievable since 289 coal-fired power plants have already been shut down in the last eight years with the help of the partnership between Bloomberg Philanthropies and the Sierra Club.
Apart from that, since the 2016 election, 51 plants have also been closed, and “despite all the bluster from the White House, as a matter of fact, since Trump got elected, the rate of closure has gone up.”
The former New York City mayor who initially considered joining the 2020 Democratic presidential race, but changed his mind, has slammed other candidates about their plans on climate change which sets their goal for complete eradication by 2050. He has instead vowed to use his extreme wealth and political connections to fight climate change and defeat President Trump.
“Politicians keep making promises about climate change mitigation by the year 2050 — hypocritically, after they’re long gone, and no one can hold them accountable,” Bloomberg said, while his own initiative will be completed a whole 20 years earlier.
Other than shutting down coal plants, Bloomberg is also finding a way to stop new construction of gas plants. “By the time they are built, they’ll be out of date because renewable will be cheaper,” he mentioned in his speech in MIT, adding that we “don’t want to replace one fossil fuel with another.” The goal to eradicate use of both natural gas and coal is the main reason as to why his initiative is named “Beyond Carbon.”
Beyond Carbon is the largest philanthropic initiative effort against climate change to date, according to the mayor’s foundation. This organization will even bypass the efforts of the federal government.
“We’re in a race against time with climate change, and yet there is virtually no hope of bold federal action on this issue for at least another two years. Mother Nature is not waiting on our political calendar, and neither can we,” Bloomberg mentioned in his statement.
Bloomberg Philanthropies, along with the Sierra Club have managed to close about half of the 530 coal plants across the U.S. since 2011.
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