[Matt] Frost thinks we should pay the organizations which own underground coal deposits—specifically, the U.S. government—for the right to never mine it.
“The U.S. coal deposits represent a potential store of future CO₂ emissions,” Frost told me. “The assumption, the policy assumption, is that they need to be extracted. But what if we just sequester this carbon while it’s still in coal form?”
It’s plain that Bill Gates would never spend $2b buying coal rather than funding a clean-energy research initiative, no matter which were likely to be more effective. It’s interesting and instructive to ponder why that is.