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Montana Coal Battle Fueled by EPA Clean Power Plan

EPA rule could put the Dems' seat in danger. (For complete 2014 midterm coverage, get your campaign fix on The Grid.)

by
Rod Kackley

Bio

June 22, 2014 - 12:35 am
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Rep. Steve Daines (R-Mont.), who wants to take John Walsh’s place in the U.S. Senate, is doing his best to block the Environmental Protection Agency’s Clean Power Plan that was proposed in June.

Daines’ bill, a companion to the Senate’s Coal Country Protection Act, would prevent the EPA’s proposed regulations from taking effect until four benchmarks are met: The Department of Labor certifies that the regulations would not cost jobs; the Congressional Budget Office certifies that the regulations would not result in any loss in the gross domestic product; the Energy Information Administration certifies that the regulations would not increase electricity rates; the Federal American Electric Reliability Corporation certifies that electricity deliver would remain reliable.

Walsh has not come out squarely against Daines’ proposal, but he has sided with the Obama administration in the past on the climate change-clean energy debate.

The EPA wants new regulations that would cut power plant emissions by 30 percent by 2030. The Clean Power Plan that was released June 2 would for the first time cut carbon pollution from existing power plants, which the EPA said are the largest source of carbon pollution in the nation.

EPA officials said the proposal includes a flexible timeline for states to follow for submitting plans to the agency—with plans due in June 2016, with the option to use a two-step process for submitting final plans if more time is needed. States that have already invested in energy-efficiency programs will be able to build on these programs during the compliance period to help make progress toward meeting their goal.

EPA is accepting comment on the proposal in the Federal Register and will hold four public hearings on the proposed Clean Power Plan during the week of July 28 in Denver, Atlanta, Washington, D.C., and Pittsburgh.

Daines has introduced the Coal Jobs and Affordable Energy Protection Act that would block the new regulations that he said would force higher energy costs on American families and mean the loss of good-paying jobs in Montana.

In the press release announcing his proposal, Daines pointed to a statement from the AFL-CIO-affiliated United Mine Workers of America, arguing that the EPA rules “will lead to long-term and irreversible job losses for thousands of coal miners, electrical workers, utility workers, boilermakers, railroad workers and others without achieving any significant reduction of global greenhouse gas emissions.”

Daines said nearly 5,000 people in Montana have jobs because of the size of the state’s coal industry. Montana contains more coal reserves than any other state and ranks sixth among the 50 states in coal production.

The Montana Coal Council says 1,224 people were directly employed in surface mining in the state in 2013, with an estimated payroll of more than $115 million. There are six major coal mines in Montana — five mining subbituminous coal and one mining lignite coal, according to the Coal Council.

Daines also said Montana gets more than half its power from coal and the average retail price for electricity in the state is 8.42 cents per kilowatt hour, among the lowest in the nation.

“Montanans rely on coal to provide good, high-paying jobs, deliver affordable electricity to our families and to fund our schools, libraries and parks. President Obama’s war on coal is a war on Montana’s economy, workers and families,” Daines said.

Sen. Walsh (D-Mont.) has not commented on Daines’ latest proposal.

Nor has Walsh passed final judgment publicly on the EPA Clean Power Plan. Walsh told the Billings Gazette June 3 he would be “listening to Montanans in the coming months to make sure that any final rule from the EPA is right for Montana’s future and for Montana’s jobs now.”

Top Rated Comments   
Carbon dioxide is for plants what oxygen is for humans. Please stop calling it POLLUTION!

Put another one in the win column for the republicans in November. Just one more democrat talking out both sides of his mouth. Says one thing on the floor of the senate - then another back home with the voters. Makes for a great campaign ad you moron. Nothing like providing the rope for your own hanging!

Keep at it libtards - soon there won't be one of your kind in the Senate! And that can't happen soon enough!

5 weeks ago
5 weeks ago Link To Comment
All Comments   (14)
All Comments   (14)
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What is amazing (but I guess not with this admin) is that we have to pass laws to make our agencies comply with the laws they are already supposed to comply with.

In addition to the four items the Senator to-be has proposed, the Clean Air Act also stipulates that technological feasible and financially feasible solutions and alternatives are available to any activity that is topped by the EPA.

Thus, thy cannot close any process down unless the solution is available and fiscal. Carbon capture has not been proven and is not fiscally feasible.

Second, the outcomes must be measurable and verifiable. Air measurements (not computer calculations) must demonstrate reduced co2 AND the outcomes of the reduced co2 must also be measured. If the claim is 25,000 asthma attacks last year, then this year it should be none, otherwise the plants will be started back up.

3. EPA is using bogus science in calculating the 'cost' from these plants. The Science Review Board should be removed from the politics of EPA and made independent. Right now, it is stacked and wired.
5 weeks ago
5 weeks ago Link To Comment
Ask yourself what's worse---freezing to death in the cold or living half of your day in the dark. This is the scenario that the EPA wants for this country. Green energy can't meet the need, and if you look closely--it's just another way to feed the coffers of the Democratic Party. The wealthy green freaks get taxpayer subsidies to support their fraudulent experiments and when they go bankrupt they never the the money back, but always manage to give huge contributions to the Democratic Party.
5 weeks ago
5 weeks ago Link To Comment
It's called money laundering.
5 weeks ago
5 weeks ago Link To Comment
Carbon dioxide is for plants what oxygen is for humans. Please stop calling it POLLUTION!

Put another one in the win column for the republicans in November. Just one more democrat talking out both sides of his mouth. Says one thing on the floor of the senate - then another back home with the voters. Makes for a great campaign ad you moron. Nothing like providing the rope for your own hanging!

Keep at it libtards - soon there won't be one of your kind in the Senate! And that can't happen soon enough!

5 weeks ago
5 weeks ago Link To Comment
I was also going to comment on the term 'carbon pollution', but you said it much better than I would've. It's amazing how people buy into BS without even realizing they're doing it. The term should be 'carbon emissions'.
5 weeks ago
5 weeks ago Link To Comment
The voters eventually figure it out, once their personal well-being is directly threatened. I just wish they would figure it out before they get mugged, instead of afterwards.
5 weeks ago
5 weeks ago Link To Comment
Imagine 10 Cowboy Stadiums, each holding 100,000 seats. That's one million seats.

Now imagine 4 of those one million.

That's how many CO2 molecules there are in air.

Now imagine 950,000 seats taken by H20 (water vapor, the most potent "greenhouse" gas).

Which is more likely to have an effect on GolwBall Warmimg?

Ax your favorite Leftiod next time youmget the chance.
5 weeks ago
5 weeks ago Link To Comment
5 weeks ago
5 weeks ago Link To Comment
Great illustration Bill!
5 weeks ago
5 weeks ago Link To Comment
Notice that the left has already WON round one in this battle: Even writer Kackley uses the term 'carbon pollution' to describe the emission of carbon dioxide from coal-fired power plants. Hello? CO2 is produced by all animals and is necessary for plant life; the amount in the atmosphere seems to be in the range that has prevailed historically.

We see this in every fight with the left: Their first step is to stick a pejorative label on what they want to regulate. Thus you will rarely hear discussion of laws restricting the breeding of pet dogs: they speak of 'puppy mills.'

It is all one fight: The lefties know what we should and shouldn't be doing. They label whatever they dislike as 'rape' or some equivalent and proceed from there. On the other side of the coin, illegal immigration is now 'reuniting families' and 'an act of love,' while the people who do it are 'undocumented.'
5 weeks ago
5 weeks ago Link To Comment
"Their first step is to stick a pejorative label on what they want to regulate."

Set the agenda by dictating the vocabulary.
5 weeks ago
5 weeks ago Link To Comment

And it all started with their PC crap. Control the narrative - at all costs - best way to do that is to control our vocabulary. And many of us are falling into that claptrap.

5 weeks ago
5 weeks ago Link To Comment
You know it's BS when they create lies, give out 'peace' prizes and try to stop people from refuting it because it's 'settled'. A shortcut: What's Al Gore's position?" Then, run in the opposite position.
5 weeks ago
5 weeks ago Link To Comment
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