Archive for May, 2010

CCT Moving Forward In The Magnolia State


Great news for Mississippians: clean-coal electricity will soon be bringing more low-cost energy and more jobs to your state:

Mississippi Power Co. will proceed with a planned coal-fired, electric-generating plant in Kemper   County.

Mississippi Power officials say the plant will create 260 permanent jobs and 1,000 jobs during the construction phase. Brian Henson, executive director of the Kemper County Economic Development Authority, said many in the community support the project, mainly because of the jobs it will create. He said the county’s unemployment rate is 14.1 percent. “It’s one of those projects you wish for, but you never actually see,” Henson said. 

As Mississippi Power announced yesterday, this clean coal power plant will use integrated gasification technology to provide affordable electricity to hundreds of thousands of Magnolia state households and businesses:

The proposed 582-megawatt plant is expected to come online by 2014 and will use lignite, a low-cost energy source found in Mississippi. This energy source will be added to Mississippi Power’s existing fuel mix of natural gas and coal and will allow the company and its customers to avoid the volatility and growing costs associated with other fuels.

Mississippi Power is a wholly owned subsidiary of Southern Company. Mississippi Power provides retail electric service to approximately 200,000 customers in 23 southeast Mississippi counties.

With new coal-based power plants being constructed around the nation boasting technology that can  reduce regulated emissions by more than 90 percent, this new plant in Mississippi shows that CCT will continue to be a large part of our energy production today and in the future.  

 


Legislative, Not Regulatory Action Needed On Climate Change

We have said for some time now, ACCCE can be for federal
climate legislation.  And while there is debate as to what direction
Congress should take when it comes to reducing greenhouse gas emissions, there
is solid bipartisan agreement that it’s Congress that should take action, “not
an unelected federal agency,” as
Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D-WV) said yesterday
:

“We cannot wait any longer to send
the message that relying on EPA is the wrong way to go,” Rockefeller said in an
e-mail. “The fate of our West Virginia economy, our manufacturing industries
and our workers should not be in the hands of EPA.”

It’s important that any climate change legislation avoid a
patchwork of conflicting standards or duplicative programs, something that
could happen if regulatory action was taken instead of Congressional action.
That’s why there is bipartisan consensus that reducing emissions must be
handled in the right way.

 
 


California Has Golden Opportunity With Clean Coal


President Obama spoke
today in California about the future of America’s energy landscape, and how
investments in the clean-energy industry can lead to the creation of more jobs
in California and throughout the country.

Clean coal is one of
these clean-energy technologies that must be developed as we move toward a green
economy and the creation of green jobs.  Clean coal is already helping boost the
economy and employment in places like Michigan:

The U.S. Department
of Energy has
touted
the returns from clean coal investment in the past. A study
entitled Benefits of Investment in Clean Coal Technology found that
by 2009, the cumulative benefits from
government investment in CCT totaled $6 billion and cumulative DOE costs totaled
$3.5 billion. By 2020, the cumulative benefits are expected to total $111
billion, at a cost to the DOE of only $8.5 billion.

California already
has the 9th highest electricity prices in the nation. And as we
talked about last week
rising energy prices threaten to drive more
businesses out of the state.  Thankfully, CCT investment represents an
opportunity for California to create new jobs that will help the country arrive
at its clean energy future.


Increasing U.S. Competitiveness With Clean Coal

 

Yesterday, diplomats
from the United States and China released a
statement
on energy security cooperation, highlighting that the two
countries “will continue to conduct deep and pragmatic cooperation in join
investment, research and development, product and promotion in the area of clean
coal.” Here’s what China’s
Vice Minister of Science and Technology
, Cao Jianlin, said:

Clean energy projects, specifically
new energy vehicles, energy-efficient construction and clean coal technology,
are the key areas of science cooperation between China and the United States, a
Chinese official said here on Monday.

According to a new agreement between
the two countries, they will invest in joint laboratories, and support research
in related areas, Cao Jianlin, vice minister of science and technology of China,
told a news briefing on the second China-U.S. Strategic and Economic
Dialogues.

The promotion and
production of clean coal technology is one of the few bipartisan issues left in
Congress, bipartisanship
that was displayed at yesterday’s Congressional Coal Caucus
. Leaders from
both parties understand the need for reliable, clean baseload electricity. 
Without clean coal, the US cannot be competitive in the global economy with
other nations like China that understand that coal-based electricity will be
needed to grow their economies and create jobs.

 

As President Obama’s
Secretary of Energy, Steven Chu, said last
month
:

 

“I agree with you
absolutely that China and India are not going to turn their back on coal, and so
we have to develop the technologies that can use coal cleanly … The United
States, quite frankly, I don’t believe will turn its back on coal as well. So we
need to develop these clean coal technologies.”


America’s Power On The Hill

Did you catch the
live-tweet of the Congressional Coal Caucus’s kick-off hearing this morning? You
can visit the America’s Power Twitter page to
catch up.

At this roundtable on
the economic impact of the coal industry, our President and CEO Steve Miller
discussed the importance of investing in clean coal technology to America’s
energy and economic future. The bipartisan caucus also heard from
representatives from the American Iron and Steel Institute, United Mine Workers,
the Edison Electric Institute, the Association of American Railroads and Alpha
Natural Resources.

The facts show that
clean coal technology would not only help keep electricity affordable for many
Americans, but it would also create hundreds – and in many cases thousands – of
jobs in every state. According to a study
by BBC Research and Consulting
, the total number of permanent jobs would
total 150,000, with 4.5 million job-years of employment created for
construction.

As Steve Miller
pointed out in his testimony today:

“Domestically
produced coal is the most abundant and affordable means to help satisfy
America’s increasing demand for electricity. …  By working together, the
American coal-fueled electricity industry and its public sector partners can
meet the environmental challenges we face, while continuing to provide reliable,
low-cost electricity.”

Kevin Dempsey, Senior
Vice President for the American Iron and Steel Institute, talked about the
investment their industry is making into clean coal
and other
technologies that will help reduce emissions:

“We are also actively
involved in research programs to develop new steelmaking technologies that will
allow further significant emissions reductions. Under a grant from the
Department of Energy’s Industrial Technology Program, we are developing the
detailed engineering design for a pilot plant for a new coal-based direct
reduced iron technology process … that has the potential to produce steel using
much less energy than a traditional blast furnace. We also support continued
research into carbon capture and storage technology, both for electricity
generation and for steelmaking operations.”

America’s Power is
happy to see that Republicans
and Democrats are coming together
to support clean coal and the jobs
and economic growth that will come with it.


A Day Of Bipartisanship

 

As
President Obama and Senate Republicans meet this afternoon for a
bipartisan luncheon
, House Republicans and Democrats are also coming
together today to promote domestically-produced coal that provides low-cost
energy to Americans.

 

The
Congressional Coal Caucus
, co-chaired by Representatives Shelley Moore
Capito (R-WV), Jason Altmire (D-PA), Tim Holden (D-PA), Dennis Rehberg (R-MT),
John Salazar (D-CO) and John Shimkus (D-IL), is having a kickoff hearing this
morning at 10:30 at 1302 Longworth House Office Building. ACCCE President and
CEO Stephen Miller is joining the Coal Caucus for a roundtable discussion on
“The Economics of Coal,” focusing on direct mining jobs as well as hundreds of
thousands of jobs that are dependent on the transportation and use of coal.

 

If
there’s one thing that Americans want both Republicans and Democrats to focus
on, it’s jobs. And the Congressional Coal Caucus was formed in January because
members of both parties know that coal is vital to rebuilding America’s economy,
creating jobs and maintaining a competitive advantage in this global economy.
Check back here for more coverage of the Coal Caucus.


Clean Coal And Small Business

National Small
Business Week
kicked off yesterday, and we at ACCCE recognize the integral
role small businesses play in the continued development of clean coal technology
across the country. With their help, businesses of all sizes and consumers can
continue to enjoy affordable, abundant energy for years to
come.

As
part of our Real People, Real Stories series, we had the chance to meet
AOA
Products LLC owner Olivia Albright, who stressed the importance of affordable
energy to her company:


A
Pennsylvania State University study estimated that by 2015 coal-fueled electric
generation will both directly and indirectly contribute around $1 trillion in
gross economic output, $362 billion in annual household incomes and 6.8 million
jobs. Check out the study here.



The Value Of Carbon Capture

 

ACCCE President Steve
Miller explained in The
New York Times last Friday
that we should not disregard “the importance
of carbon capture and sequestration technology in building a clean energy
future”:

 

CCS technology will also allow our
nation to reduce the carbon footprint of coal, America’s most abundant energy
resource, meaning that millions of Americans can continue to receive the
benefits of affordable, reliable electricity as our nation recovers from this
recession.

 

Prudent investments in CCS by industry
and government are essential to achieving the clean energy future we all seek.

 

But don’t just take
it from us. President Obama’s Assistant Secretary Of Energy, James Markowsky,
also argued last week
that “carbon capture and storage, or CCS, can
significantly contribute” to securing our energy future. Markowsky outlined what
the Obama administration is doing to promote C.C.S.:

 

CCS is not without challenges, but
President Obama, Congress and industry have committed billions of dollars to
address advances in CCS The Energy Department’s Office of Fossil Energy is
pursuing a vigorous program to have CCS in place for commercial deployment in
the next decade, and substantial progress is being made in state-of-the-art
technology options that can dramatically reduce the cost of carbon dioxide
capture and improve power plant efficiency.

 

Both businesses and
government know we can’t rule anything out when it comes to building a clean
energy future and that clean coal is an affordable way to help America move
toward that future.