Archive for October, 2011

EPA Rules Still Threatening US Jobs

A few weeks ago, Democrats and Republicans in the U.S. House of Representatives voted to slow down proposed EPA regulations by passing the TRAIN Act, which requires analysis of the cumulative impacts of a number of large regulations on power plants before they’re enacted.

We know how detrimental these regulations, if left unchanged, will be to American jobs and affordable electricity prices. Nearly 183,000 jobs per year, on average from 2012 to 2020, would be lost and electricity rates would increase by double digits in most parts of the country, according to a new NERA study.

We want to continue to remind our elected officials that the EPA must slow down, which is why you may have seen this print ad in the past few days. The ad is running nationally, as well as some select newspapers in the Midwest.

The ad, much like our “Rodeo” TV spot, reminds legislators that Americans have been working hard on our economic recovery, and the average American family can’t afford any Washington policies that lead to higher electricity prices and job loss.

Take a look, and let us know what you think by leaving a comment below.


Inside USEA’s Energy Supply Forum: Coal’s Role in the U.S.’ Energy Future

Last week, we live-tweeted from the United States Energy Association’s Energy Supply Forum, where officials from industry and government groups spoke about the future of energy and our resources’ role in economic, energy and environmental security. Like many there, Charles McConnell, COO at the Department of Energy’s Office of Fossil Energy, said that coal would remain a relevant part of America’s energy portfolio. He emphasized that advanced coal technologies like carbon capture and storage are a major part of the DOE’s strategic plans.

At the USEA #Energy Supply Forum, Charles McConnell, COO of @, says we need coal to be part of a clean energy future.
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In addition to environmental cleanliness, advanced coal technologies are important for U.S. energy security. Tracy Evans, President and COO of Denbury Resources in Texas, spoke to me about his company’s carbon capture and storage technologies:

Southern Company’s CEO, Tom Fanning, was the keynote speaker at the forum. Southern is currently deploying IGCC technology in Mississippi for carbon capture from coal-fueled power plants. Fanning noted firsthand: coal is a stable, safe and low-cost source of energy, and a bedrock of economic growth. But Fanning also cautioned that EPA regulations are threatening to kill jobs and impair electric reliability.

Fanning: EPA regs targeting coal-fueled power would reduce jobs, impair electric reliability. "They just don't make sense."
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Keep in mind that four of the EPA’s proposed regulations, according to a new NERA study, would cost the U.S. nearly 183,000 jobs each year, and force 39.1 gigawatts of coal-fueled power plant retirements in 2015.

If you’re concerned about these EPA rules, make sure to sign our petition to let our elected officials know that Americans can’t afford regulations that destroy jobs in this difficult economic environment.


October is National Energy Awareness Month

October is National Energy Awareness Month! The White House created National Energy Awareness Month two years ago to reinforce just how important energy is to the United States. To celebrate this month, Behind the Plug will feature a series about energy in America.

When you flip on a light switch in your home, or see a traffic light change to green, have you ever stopped to wonder where that electricity comes from?

America has a diverse energy portfolio—our electricity is generated through coal, natural gas, oil, nuclear and renewable technologies. With a huge demand for electricity, the U.S. depends on both baseload power and peaking power. Renewable technology works well for peaking power—it’s an important supplemental tool to handle the up and down of energy demand throughout the day. Coal is a stable, reliable source for baseload power—the energy needed to meet the constant demand for electricity.

With so many energy sources in the country, each state has a unique make-up of what generates electricity. Depending on the location and natural resources, each state is compromised of a different mix of energy sources. Check out the tool below to see where power in your state comes from.

With nearly half of America’s power coming from coal, it’s likely that you live in one of the 48 states that uses electricity generated with coal. Leave a note in the comments below and let us know how important coal-fueled electricity is in your state.


What is the CARE Act?

Congress is back in session this week, and the impact of Washington energy and environmental policies on the economy continues to be a hot topic of debate on Capitol Hill. Nearly 10 days ago, Republicans and Democrats in the U.S. House of Representatives passed the TRAIN Act (H.R. 2401), a bill that would require the EPA to analyze and understand the cumulative economic impacts of its regulations. Now we look toward the U.S. Senate to take similar common sense action because American jobs are at stake, as well as access to affordable, reliable electricity that is essential to our economic recovery.

Like the TRAIN Act, the CARE Act (Comprehensive Assessment of Regulations on the Economy Act of 2011), S. 609, would force the EPA to study the full impact of the EPA regulations on the economy and jobs. The proposed legislation would set up a committee with different representatives from government agencies to study and analyze the full impacts of a number of major EPA regulations. The committee’s findings would determine the impact on jobs and small businesses, electricity and energy prices, the global economic competitiveness of the U.S., and the reliability of the electric power grid.

Our Senators should support the CARE Act because just four of the EPA’s newly proposed regulations, according to a new NERA study, would cause the U.S. to lose nearly 183,000 jobs per year from 2012 to 2020 and spike electricity prices by double digital in many regions of the country. In this recovering economy, it’s just not something Americans can afford.

In this video, listen to several local elected officials in Ohio as they talk about the impact proposed EPA regulations would have in the Buckeye State:

Help keep EPA regulations from threatening American jobs by signing our Facebook petition.