Metro Briefs

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While schools have a right to teach courses on religious texts like the Bible, the ACLU says the school system can’t show support for a specific faith such as Christianity.

The ACLU says the course mimics curriculum offered by the National Council on Bible Curriculum in Public Schools. A county in Texas dropped the course this year after eight parents sued last year.

The Virginia ACLU filed a Freedom of Information request with the Craig County School Board to learn more about the course.

ROANOKE

U.S. grant spurs clean coal research

A federal grant will enable Virginia Tech scientists to increase their research on reducing carbon dioxide emissions from burning coal.

Rep. Rick Boucher, Virginia Democrat, said that the Department of Energy (DOE) has approved a $1.8 million grant for “clean coal” research.

He said the grant will fund a feasibility study for a large-scale test in which 100,000 tons of carbon dioxide would be injected into an unmineable coal seams in Southwest Virginia. Conducting the test would require a DOE investment of $60 million.

A smaller test is to begin in Russell County this summer. Mr. Boucher said coal has a great capacity to store carbon dioxide.

The announcement brings the total federal investment in the carbon storage project to $6.34 million.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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