A war on coal, coal miners, coal companies, and coal users.
By Tom Blumer | Special to Ohio Watchdog
Viewed in isolation, the following statement recently cited at the Daily Caller by Environmental Protection Agency Region 1 Administrator Curtis Spalding almost seems compassionate:
“… if you go to West Virginia, Pennsylvania, and all those places, you have coal communities who depend on coal. And to say that we just think those communities should just go away, we can’t do that.”
But in full context, that statement, made at the National Pesticide Forum in March at Yale University, isn’t compassionate at all. Instead, it admits to intentional deception:
“Lisa Jackson has put forth a very powerful message to the country. Just two days ago, the decision on greenhouse gas performance standard and saying basically gas plants are the performance standard which means if you want to build a coal plant you got a big problem. That was a huge decision.”
“You can’t imagine how tough that was. Because you got to remember if you go to West Virginia, Pennsylvania, and all those places, you have coal communities who depend on coal. And to say that we just think those communities should just go away, we can’t do that. But she had to do what the law and policy suggested. And it’s painful. It’s painful every step of the way.”
Now, it’s crystal clear that Mr. Spalding doesn’t mean “we can’t do that” — because, thanks to the “decision” by Ms. Jackson, who heads the EPA, embodied in a proposed rule the EPA clearly expects to stand, federal regulators are well on their way to making coal communities in “all those places,” one of which is Ohio, “go away.”
So when Mr. Spalding said, “we can’t do that,” he really meant, “we can’t say that.”
Thanks to someone who videotaped and distributed Spalding’s sputtering, we now know, as if there has ever really been any doubt, that the EPA’s objective is to take down the entire coal industry.
Mr. Spalding doesn’t seem to understand (or doesn’t care to) that it’s not just coal communities which will “go away.” As a press release from the Ohio Coal Association’s Mike Carey noted, “Coal provides nearly 86 percent of our electricity in Ohio with reserves lasting an estimated 250 years. Destroying our industry, as planned by President Obama, would decimate Ohio because our economy relies on an affordable and abundant supply of electricity to power economic sectors like manufacturing.”
The replacement energy if coal is eliminated as an energy source will be neither affordable nor abundant. Recently established capacity prices for 2015-2016, which take into account anticipated coal-fired plant closures, came in eight times higher than the price which was set for 2012-2013. The sheer volume of energy Ohio will have to import from other states will will require billions of dollars in transmission line upgrades which still might not be enough to prevent brownouts or rolling blackouts.
The sad truth as the EPA acknowledges in its proposed rule, is that this war on coal, coal miners, coal companies, and coal users is being waged for one reason only: because it believes that “GHGs” (greenhouse gases, principally carbon dioxide) emitted by coal are “causing or contributing to climate change … (which) endanger(s) both the public health and the public welfare of current and future generations.”The EPA’s contention about “climate change,” the antiseptic term for “global warming,” has no credible basis. Carbon dioxide is rising, but the earth is cooling.
The EPA’s entire commerce-killing exercise is completely unnecessary and tragic, and must be stopped — on January 20, 2013 at the latest.