29 Jun '12, 2pm

Dear US taxpayers: do you know you just sold 721 million tons of coal to Peabody Energy at $1.10/ton?

Dear US taxpayers: do you know you just sold 721 million tons of coal to Peabody Energy at $1.10/ton?

Yesterday — while the rest of us were focused on “individual mandates,” Obamacare, and the fate of the known universe as determined by nine robed elders — the fossil-fuel cash machine took a discreet turn of its crankshaft. A little deal went down in D.C., one that David Roberts wrote about here in Grist a few days ago. In a nutshell: the federal government sold rights to 721 million tons of coal in Wyoming’s Powder River Basin — coal that is the collective property of the American people — to a private company, Peabody Energy; at a price that is, well, rock-bottom; under terms drawn up by that company; in an auction with only one bidder. (Joe Smyth explains the process here. ) Coal trucks in the Powder River Basin. (Photo by KimonBerlin .) Such a deal! (How good a deal? Roberts broke that down for you last month.) And just the sort of thing that is sadly routine in the re...

Full article: http://grist.org/news/our-coal-such-a-steal-peabody-energ...

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