The war on coal miners and their families is being extended to families and clients of oil and gas and nuclear energy operations as well
By Larry Bell ~
The carbon-caused climate crisis cabal must be absolutely giddy that President Obama has made good on his pledge that “if somebody wants to build a coal-powered plant,” policies of his regime “will bankrupt them because they’re going to be charged a huge sum for all the greenhouse gas that’s being emitted.”
He fulfilled that promise, with Peabody Energy Corp, America’s largest mining company, following Arch Coal, Inc., Alpha Natural Resources, Inc., Patriot Coal Corp., and Walter Energy, Inc. into Chapter 11 filings.
Speaking last November at a Texas Public Policy Foundation conference, Murray Energy Corporation owner Robert Murray described the Obama Administration’s so-called “Clean Power Plan” as “a political power grab of America’s power grid.”
He views it as “a blatantly illegal effort by the Executive Branch to use the Clean Air Act of 1971 in a way never intended by Congress to promulgate carbon dioxide emission reductions across America, which will radically and destructively transform our electric power system.”
The regulatory consequences have had devastating impacts on families and communities of miners, truckers, engineers, construction workers, and others who depend upon coal industry employment.
A Duke University study has estimated that 50,000 coal jobs were lost between 2008 and 2012. The Energy Information Administration’s 2013 data reported losses of about 10,000 more (another 10% of the industry workforce), with Appalachia, Utah, eastern Kentucky, and southern West Virginia taking huge hits.
Whole towns across America ranging from Wyoming to Virginia to Pennsylvania have been, and continue to be, decimated.
A 2015 McKinsey and Company study shows that the entire U.S. coal industry is now bankrupt, with all producers together lacking the $45 billion needed to fund their current debts and employee and reclamation liabilities.
The Mine Safety and Health Administration reports that coal companies have lost a combined $30 billion in stock market value since 2010, with much of that hemorrhage bleeding value from worker 401(k) pensions.
Consequences of the EPA’s war on fossil energy won’t bring happy tidings for those who hope to recharge their plug-in Obamacars from sunbeams or moonbeams at night . . . and seldom from intermittent and unreliable gusty breezes.
Nope, about one-third of that electricity is provided by coal plants (down from about half in 2008). Another third comes from natural gas, the next target on the EPA’s regulatory anti-fossil hit parade.
About 20% comes from slightly more than 100 geriatric nuclear plants. Most of the rest (about 7%) comes from hydropower, a truly renewable, clean, and economical power source that turns many Greenies purple with rage.
Hillary has promised to continue the Obama Administration’s carbon-cleansing climate crusade. Speaking at CNN’s March 13 Democratic town hall meeting in Columbus, Ohio, she said, “We’re going to put a lot of coal miners and coal businesses out of business.”
Clinton’s salve for their pain would slather on liberal layers of political pork.
Her proposed $30 billion of big government lard would bail out underwater United Mine Worker pension and health plans, compensate power plant and transportation workers hurt by bankruptcies, and retrain EPA regulatory victims to qualify for politically appropriate, taxpayer-funded public works largess.
Expect similar punitive prospects for natural gas. Responding to a question from a college student whether she supported fracking at a Flint, Michigan, debate, Hillary answered, “So by the time we get through all of my conditions, I do not think there will be many places in America where fracking will continue to take place.”
Referring to methane release and water contamination, she said: “And I think that’s the best approach, because there are places where fracking is going on that are not sufficiently regulated.” (Incidentally, none of numerous EPA studies have ever detected any significant water pollution attributed to fracking.)
Bernie Sanders responded to the same question posed by CNN’s Anderson Cooper even more directly. He replied, “My answer is a lot shorter. No, I do not support fracking.”
As with fracking, clean coal in the U.S. has also made great strides. EPA statistics show that the real pollutants — sulfur, lead, carbon monoxide, and smog-causing emissions from coal plants — are down by 50% to 90% over the past 40 years.
Carbon dioxide emissions, on the other hand, aren’t pollution. Just ask any leafy friend.
Besides, wouldn’t you expect the President to take due credit, just as he promised in killing coal, for also ending billions of years of climate change?
Satellite records indicate that apart from naturally occurring 1998 and 2015 ocean El NÍno temperature spikes there hasn’t been any statistical global warming now for nearly two decades.
So perhaps before leaving the White House keys under the door mat for Hillary or Bernie, Barack will declare climate war victory and end this destructive anti-fossil jihad?
Yeah, I guess you’re right . . . maybe when hell freezes over.
NOTE: This article first appeared at: http://www.newsmax.com/LarryBell/Clean-Power-Plan-EPZ/2016/04/25/id/725532/#ixzz46rOYLmTx
Larry Bell contributes posts at the CFACT site. He heads the graduate program in space architecture at the University of Houston. He founded and directs the Sasakawa International Center for Space Architecture. He is also the author of “Climate of Corruption: Politics and Power Behind the Global Warming Hoax.”