Coal Keeps Prices Low and the Power On

Posted by Laura Sheehan at 2:06 pm, January 28, 2014

At tonight’s State of the Union address, we know President Obama will say something about our energy future.  What we don’t know is if he will take a step back from the potentially devastating policies his administration pushed in 2013 and instead establish a more sensible path forward to help our country meet our electricity needs.

Recently AEP’s Chairman, President and CEO Nicholas Akins spoke about how coal-fueled electricity has been instrumental to meeting the increase in demand caused by frigid temperatures sweeping the U.S.   He noted that nearly 90 percent of coal-fueled capacity slated for retirement next year is currently up and running to help keep the lights on and our homes warm.

“Looking at the physical side, when 89 percent of our coal capacity slated for retirement in mid-2015 is called upon and running, natural gas delivery is challenged and voltage and load reductions are occurring, it is another reminder that we should carefully plan and design this social safety net we call the electric grid to meet extreme requirements, not just steady state conditions.”

While we’re seeing just how important it is for us to continue to have coal be a part of our energy mix, other parts of the world are struggling to provide reliable and affordable energy.

A recent study by the French government, examined the energy policies of the European Union, where they have enacted the sort of ambitious climate change policies President Obama is looking to create.

Though the study looked at a number of factors and issues, one fact that can’t be ignored is this:

“Retail power prices are higher than ever, the utilities industry is in crisis and the security of supply is threatened by the lack of investment in traditional thermal generation.”

America can be a clean energy leader if we make smart decisions.  We can protect our affordable, reliable electricity and reduce our environmental impact, but we can’t accomplish this by phasing out one of our most abundant energy resources.

You can help us prove just how important it is for coal to remain part of our energy mix.  Tell this administration you support protecting the affordable, reliable energy coal provides.

Sign out letter to EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy.  Show your support for coal.


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