American Electric Power recently announced that proposed EPA regulations would force the shutdown of five coal-fueled power plants and the reduction of power generation at six other power plants, further harming electricity reliability. This would go along with a net loss of 600 power plant jobs with annual wages totaling approximately $40 million. Yet, in an editorial last week, the New York Times argued that this evidence showing how proposed EPA regulations would harm our economic and energy security was “cynical.”
ACCCE President and CEO, Steve Miller, responded with a letter to the editor of the New York Times yesterday, noting that no one should be dismissive of such evidence:
[C]alling American Electric Power cynical was dismissive of the 600 A.E.P. workers who stand to lose their jobs years ahead of schedule because of the Environmental Protection Agency’s proposed regulations. While a few more years on the job may not seem like much to you, I am sure that the 600 workers and their families feel differently.
Miller also points out that future legislation and regulations coming from Washington should emphasize, not weaken, coal’s role in a balanced energy portfolio:
There is a reason coal generates nearly half of our nation’s electricity: because it’s affordable, abundant, reliable and increasingly clean. We need energy policies that take advantage of coal’s importance to the United States, not diminish it.
Click here to see the initial findings from the National Economic Research Associates on negative effects these proposed EPA regulations on power plants would have on jobs and energy prices.