It’s long been clear that getting a new generation of emission-free nuclear power plants built in the United States will be an uphill battle. Now, because of a resolution on energy policy that was recently approved by the Western Governors Association, that hill is becoming a mountain.

At their annual meeting in Arizona, governors of 19 Western states passed a resolution calling for 30,000 megawatts of “clean power generation” in the region by 2015. That’s equivalent to the output of 30 large power plants.

Astonishingly, the governors advocated greater use of two energy sources that load the atmosphere with carbon emissions – coal and natural gas. They said states should focus on coal gasification, natural gas, and cogeneration, along with renewable energy sources, including hydro.

New nuclear power plants were not part of the governors