Water Is New Weapon in Texas Coal Plant Fights

"There is a new front in the fight over whether Texas should build more coal-fired power plants -- water.

The various water factions - farmers, environmentalists and growing, thirsty cities - have come together as allies against proposed coal plants across the state, with battles now raging from Abilene to Corpus Christi.

Their shared concern: The plants will use too much of an already stressed resource. So the unlikely allies are asking water suppliers to not sell the rights to billions of gallons to the plants, seizing on the notion that, perhaps more than ever, water still shapes destiny.

"Water is where they are most vulnerable," said Ryan Rittenhouse, who works on the watchdog group Public Citizen's anti-coal campaign in Texas. "If (water agencies) don't sell the water, we don't know where else they can get it.""

Matthew Tresaugue reports for the Houston Chronicle October 24, 2010.

Monday, October 25, 2010