In particular, watch the coal-state Democrats, led by Virginia's Rick Boucher, who are pressuring Waxman to weaken the short-term emissions targets, so that coal-heavy utilities will have more time to develop carbon-capture technology and be able to compete with renewable power. It's not that they're necessarily worried the targets for emission cuts by 2020 are unrealistic on some macro level. Rather, they're worried that the coal industry will play only a tiny role in a low-carbon future if it's not given ample time to adjust. The flipside, of course, is that most climate scientists don't think we have time to dally around.As a ratepayer, I don't think we have time to dally around, either. Dominion Virginia Power raised our rates 18 percent in September, 1.5 percent in January and now wants to raise them another 7 percent, all in large part due to higher coal prices and the huge cost of building new coal-fired power plants.
Who's Rep. Boucher really looking out for -- coal states? Or corporate coal polluters?