Oregon Gov. Kitzhaber has a very practical way of looking at decisions related to coal export infrastructure. He recently told the Portland Business Journal, "I personally don't support investing in coal infrastructure. I think that once you've made that investment, it's going to be really hard to get it back, and I do not think that's where the future is."
He must certainly be reading all of the recent academic, business, economic and stock reports that show that coal is trending down, is doing so fast and will continue to decline.
Decisions on export ports in Oregon, Washington or the Tongue River Railroad in Montana, for example, are about what kind of energy economy we should have well into the future — and these decisions will lock us in. We do have energy options that protect our air, water and human health: solar, wind, energy efficiency. It is smart to recognize that we are in a time of transition and embrace that transition because it is one that will allow us to keep prospering and maybe avoid some ill effects of global climate change as well as human health effects.
Our own Gov. Bullock would do well to be so forward thinking. I believe he can and will.