As The Washington Post pointed out this week, the EPA is signaling that it might regulate carbon emissions under the Clean Air Act despite industry opposition and the fact that “technology for capturing carbon dioxide emissions is expensive and virtually untested.” Moreover, the stimulus bill passed this week includes only $3.4 billion for fossil fuel research and development projects, according to Grist, while setting aside “at least $62.2 billion in direct spending on green initiatives and $20 billion in green tax incentives.”

Maybe that is indication that we have, in fact, made certain decisions about our priorities. But Obama’s remarks about CCS in Canada yesterday are a signal that other questions remain. One only hopes that in the wake of this winter’s coal-ash spills, the ridiculous debate about whether or not coal is clean will no longer distract the press from raising them.

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Curtis Brainard is the editor of The Observatory, CJR's online critique of science and environment reporting. Follow him on Twitter @cbrainard.