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This video and accompanying essay examine ways to reduce the environmental impact of burning coal. Two technologies are discussed: turning solid coal into a clean-burning fuel gas (syngas), and capture and storage of CO2.

Video length: 5:03 min.

Learn more about Teaching Climate Literacy and Energy Awareness»

Notes From Our Reviewers The CLEAN collection is hand-picked and rigorously reviewed for scientific accuracy and classroom effectiveness. Read what our review team had to say about this resource below or learn more about how CLEAN reviews teaching materials
Teaching Tips | Science | Pedagogy | Technical Details

Teaching Tips

About the Science

  • The video gives an overview of coal electricity generation, clean coal technology, and sequestering carbon dioxide.
  • Clean coal is an umbrella term used to describe technologies that may reduce CO2 emissions (e.g. sequestration, coal gasification, scrubbers).
  • Provides statistics for overall annual U.S. coal consumption as well as average household usage, and then explains the need for developing a cleaner way to convert coal into electricity. [Note that coal consumption has been reduced nationwide since this video was produced.]
  • While promising, most applications of clean coal technology are still not ready for implementation.
  • Comments from expert scientist: It is a great idea to talk about the pros and cons of the coal industry and possible changes to technology both in terms of combustion technology and carbon capture. The Frontline documentary is a good place to start but I do not think the "background essay" is adequate.

About the Pedagogy

  • The video is accompanied by a background essay and discussion questions.

Technical Details/Ease of Use

  • The video has closed-captioned text that can be turned on/off.

Related URLs These related sites were noted by our reviewers but have not been reviewed by CLEAN

The U.S. Department of Energy's Carbon Sequestration program website can be accessed here: http://fossil.energy.gov/programs/sequestration/index.html

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