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WV Coal Association criticizes EPA regs on new power plants

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The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is scheduled to release its proposed carbon dioxide emission standards for new coal-fired power plants on Friday, Sept. 20. On Thursday, one day before the EPA release, Bill Raney, president of the West Virginia Coal Association, released the following statement:

"EPA's planned announcement this week of new source performance standards for new coal-fired power plants will hurt West Virginia jobs, our economy and may result in increased electric costs for consumers across this country.

"These new rules are expected to stymie the construction of new, and the expansion of existing, coal-fired generating plants – the most dependable, reliable and lowest cost method of making electricity in America today.

"If you can't build new coal-fired power plants or expand the ones we have, EPA's directly taking West Virginia coal jobs. What makes it worse is that the federal government has refused to determine the economic impact of these rules before they are promulgated! This negative attack is further magnified by efforts to reduce the fossil fuel and carbon control and sequestration budgets in the Department of Energy, which if anything, need to be maintained and increased!

"When you look at these rules as a package and their arrogant behavior, there is no other conclusion to be drawn than this EPA and Administration is making good on its promise to put the industry out of business and take our peoples' livelihoods. Millions of American jobs, as well as the economies of communities across this country, hang in the balance.

"The West Virginia Coal Association is calling upon all congressional leaders who recognize that coal is a critical piece of this country's energy plan and the provider of low cost, affordable electricity to put the brakes on this out-of-control EPA before the economic damage becomes irreversible. There is much more to be said on this issue, but Congress needs to act now."