Dirty, cheap coal provides 49% of the electricity in the U.S. and 30% of the country's carbon emissions which means that if the more than 100 new coal plants currently in the development pipeline get built, the planet is doomed to get warmer. That's what made a decision on Nov. 13 by an obscure appeals board at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) so important. Responding to a lawsuit filed by the Sierra Club over a new coal plant being built in Utah, the board ruled that the EPA had no grounds to refuse to regulate the CO2 emitted by new coal plants. Immediately, that made it virtually impossible for the EPA to certify any new coal plant, freezing development. In the long term, it gives the incoming Obama Administration an opening to force the coal industry to clean up or shut down.