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Laura Miller: Coal Plant Promoter

Forbes throws some light down the mineshaft and finds former Dallas Mayor Laura Miller, in her new position as non-lobbyist, non-publicist for Washington State-based Summit Energy. The piece is about Summit, for the most part -- specifically the man behind the $2.8-billion plan to "develop the first large-scale coal-gasification power plant that captures the bulk of the carbon dioxide it produces," Donald Hodel. Name sound familiar? It should. But Miller shows up toward the end, in the part that suggests she was brought in to handle the blowback from a project that will still generate waste gas, just not as much as its coal-burning counterparts.

Earlier this year, perhaps to preempt the opposition, Summit hired Laura Miller, the liberal former mayor of Dallas, to help promote the plant. Miller is perhaps better known for journeying across small-town Texas to rally ranchers in opposition to TXU's plans for more coal-fired plants, an effort that catapulted her to the central role in a recent Robert Redford-narrated documentary, Fighting Goliath: Texas Coal Wars. "Wind and solar are easier on the environment, but unfortunately they can't provide all the power," says Miller.

So, see, Jim, she's a promoter. --Robert Wilonsky

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