Archive for October, 2013

New EPA Rules Will Kill Clean Coal

This morning the Wall Street Journal ran my op-ed “New EPA Regulations Will Kill Clean Coal” which can be viewed in full by logging into their site.

Here at ACCCE, we work directly with members of the coal-based electricity industry. This gives us a firsthand look at how the new EPA regulations are putting Americans companies out of business and the American people out of work.

The fact is that the EPA’s announced rules aren’t realistic for our industry.

The new rules will require the use of carbon capture and storage technology on a massive scale and while CCS holds great promise for the future of our industry, this technology is still in its infancy.

The coal-based electricity sector is working with the government to further develop CCS technology and demonstrate that it can operate safely and reliably at large plants, but we’re not there yet.

The United States currently has only one first-generation CCS project. This first-generation technology is promising but still very expensive to operate, so a requirement that every new coal-fueled plant must deploy this technology amounts to a de facto ban on the construction of new coal plants.

An end to new coal plants would by extension mean an end to the development of CCS, among the most innovative clean coal technologies ever developed. If the United States quits on coal and clean coal technology, countries like China stand to benefit.

As an industry, our record on developing new cleaner technologies speaks for itself. There are at least 15 different clean coal technologies being used today by our coal fleet and those advancements have helped reduce emissions by nearly 90% since 1970.

This Administration is saying they support clean coal technology, but then pushing policies that would undermine its development. If the Obama administration is truly committed to clean energy, clean coal technology and CCS, then the EPA has to give the industry time to develop this technology and make it commercially viable.


Mike Duncan on Morning Briefing

This morning, I had the opportunity to discuss the impact of the new proposed EPA regulations on coal communities across the country.

The threat these potential rules pose are very real and we need to do everything we can to convince the EPA that they’re on the wrong path.

The EPA’s approach is to overreach and over-regulate, threatening an industry that supports hundreds of thousands of jobs, provides reliable and affordable energy, and is already working on our own to develop cleaner more efficient technology.

What may be worse than the EPA’s approach is their attempt to cover what they’re really trying to do.  The EPA has announced a listening tour to understand public reactions to their proposal, but they won’t be stopping in any major coal communities.  This make it less of a listening tour and more of a publicity stunt.

If you want to stand up against government overreach, use our comment tool to send a letter directly to the EPA.

If you want to listen to my full interview, click here.

Join us!

Energy jobs and affordable electricity in America are critical to a stable economy and bright energy future.  Sadly, however, the administration has set its sights on the coal-based electricity industry and if successful in its quest to power down America, businesses, energy employees and consumers across the nation will pay the price through lost wages, lost jobs and higher energy bills.

On October 29th, 2013 we will be standing up for American energy jobs and affordable electricity at the U.S. Capitol and hope you will also make a stand.

Join ACCCE, Members of Congress and energy and manufacturing workers from across the country for a rally on the West side of the U.S. Capitol from 11:00am to 1:30pm. This is your opportunity to make your voice heard!

Devastating regulations have been proposed by the federal government and your opinion matters. Tell the administration that the hard working people of the United States will not tolerate having their jobs and way of life put at risk.

Don’t forget to put October 29th on your calendar and make plans to be in D.C. to join your fellow energy workers.  If you can’t make it in person, please ACT NOW by telling the EPA that government overreach is hurting American jobs, affordable electricity and the American economy.

See you soon!

Dale Jr. Visits State-of-the-Art Clean Coal Mine in Pennsylvania

Dale Earnhardt, Jr., America’s most popular NASCAR driver, recently toured CONSOL Energy’s Enlow Fork mine which is a part of the Bailey Mine Complex, the largest underground mine in the world and one of the most advanced and safest mines ever built. The complex produces nearly 20 million tons of coal each year.

Dale Jr. saw up close how CONSOL is using cutting edge technology on the front end of the process to produce clean coal electricity. The Pennsylvania mine is a vital asset to America’s energy future as it provides the first step towards delivering affordable electricity to businesses and families.

As ACCCE President and CEO Mike Duncan stated, this CONSOL Energy mine “is a true marvel of modern engineering” and shows how the coal-based electricity industry has pioneered “innovations in the realm of safety and beyond.”

After visiting the mine, Dale Jr. said, “Coal is an essential fuel for electricity production and coal keeps electricity prices down. America’s families and businesses rely heavily on affordable and reliable coal–from manufacturing to motorsports and everything in between.”

While at the mine, the 19-time NASCAR winner spent time talking with CONSOL employees and guests, signing autographs and taking pictures.

Jimmy Brock, CONSOL Energy’s Chief Operating Officer of Coal Operations, said “Dale Earnhardt Jr. and his team are one of the elite groups in racing and we are honored to host them. NASCAR is a great way for our industry to reach out to American families about the important role coal plays in delivering affordable power for the American economy. Many of our miners are NASCAR fans and it was a special day to host Dale Earnhardt Jr. We are excited to have him here today to learn about how coal keeps electricity affordable, reliable and increasingly clean.”

Stand with Dale Jr. and millions of Americans. Go to today and tell the EPA that clean coal technology means affordable energy and American jobs.


Why would somebody celebrate job losses and praise the destruction of a local American community?

The Sierra Club is publicly celebrating the “victory” of the 150th coal plant retirement attributed to their own efforts. It is akin to partying at the funeral of families and communities whose livelihoods have been devastated by these plant closures.

When a coal plant shuts down, the impact is felt by employees at the plant and the mines that supply it; and spreads across the community, the state, and even the nation in the form of lost jobs and higher electricity rates for businesses and families.

If Sierra Club had its way, America’s energy future would be dark. They want to permanently phase out coal from our nation’s energy portfolio by 2030. This would be devastating to our economy and our energy infrastructure as coal provides 40% of America’s electricity.

This is not a “victory” and shame on Sierra Club for claiming it so. This is a loss for the thousands of coal communities that continue to reel from plant and mine shutdowns.

The diminished use of clean coal would result in dangerous overreliance on intermittent and unreliable energy sources, and it would cripple America’s energy portfolio.

Stand with coal communities and stand up against the EPA’s cronies at Sierra Club. Go to today and let the EPA know that clean coal technology means affordable energy and American jobs.

Stand Up for Coal

On September 20, 2013, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced the proposed Carbon Pollution Standards for New Power Plants.

These unrealistic regulations will essentially put a de facto ban on the development of future clean coal plants by requiring technology that’s not fully developed or commercially viable.

The American coal-based electricity industry is vital to the economy, both nationally and locally. Electricity generated by coal is not only reliable and affordable but, importantly, is also a critical component in our quest for energy security. These new proposed standards would be devastating to the industry and our businesses and families that rely on coal to power America.

The proposed regulations also jeopardize the well-being of America’s energy workers and, if put in place, will result in higher energy bills for consumers across the board. EPA is willing to risk all of this, even though their actions will have no meaningful impact on reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

It is important for you to get involved and to stand up for the coal-based electricity industry and America’s energy future.

We have created an easy tool for you to send a comment onto the official proposed EPA regulation and encourage you to take action without delay.

It is a simple, effective way to get involved and to tell the EPA not to cripple the development and innovation of clean coal technology. We must ensure that coal remains a vital part of our energy portfolio.

We need to spread the word about the strides the industry is making in cutting-edge technology to produce cleaner electricity from coal. Further, we must not cede our global leadership in clean coal technology development to countries like China.

We should be encouraging innovation and growth and future economic prosperity, not squashing it with burdensome regulations.

Stand up for coal and send a comment to the new proposed EPA regulations.