letter editor1 300FRANKFORT, Ky. (6/15/13) – The following is an Opinion Editorial from U.S. Representative Ed Whitfield and Kentucky State Representative Jim Gooch concerning the coal protest issues currently ongoing.
 
Coal mining has been a way of life in Kentucky for over two centuries. Because of our hardworking miners, we have the fifth lowest electricity costs in the country. The price of electricity in Kentucky has also remained far below the national average for over two decades.
 
That is why we are frustrated with an anti-coal group, who recently announced they will be organizing a protest against the Kentucky coal industry on June 20th in Louisville. This environmental group claims that coal mining is hurting our communities, minority and low-income neighborhoods. We take exception to these false claims on behalf of the thousands of miners who work hard every day to keep electricity rates affordable for all Kentuckians.
 
It is also our understanding that the Sierra Club is helping to organize this anti-coal protest. We have concern over their financial ties to New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who recently gave $50 million to the Sierra Club’s anti-coal campaign aimed at closing down one third of our country’s coal-fired power plants by 2020. Mayor Bloomberg was quoted as saying, “Even though the coal industry doesn’t totally know it yet or is ready to admit it, its day is done. … Here in the U.S., I’m happy to say, the king is dead. Coal is a dead man walking.”
 
Not on our watch.
 
Unfortunately, one of the main culprits for all of the misinformation out there about coal is the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and their liberal agenda. The reality is that President Obama has launched an all-out assault on the coal industry.
 
If the President and EPA had their way, they would shut down every coal-fired power plant in America. This position is out-of-step with the world’s economy, especially as coal-generated electricity is increasing in nearly every other country in the world, including China, India and Germany. Their anti-coal position would lead to higher electricity prices on the Kentucky families that these protesters claim to be protecting. In fact, numerous reports have found that low income families and minority communities are more vulnerable to the rate hikes that would result from EPA’s anti-coal agenda.
 
If Kentucky, which generates 92 percent of its electricity through coal-fired power plants, is forced to shut down these plants, what would happen to electricity costs? A basic understanding of economics tells us that electricity costs would skyrocket due to a drastic decrease in supply. The sad reality is that President Obama and EPA have already put this trend in motion by creating unrealistic regulations on the coal industry.
 
For example, EPA recently announced new greenhouse gas emissions standards that, once enacted, will make it impossible to build a new coal-fired power plant in America because the technology does not yet exist to meet EPA’s regulations. We would be the only country in the world in which you would not be able to build a coal-fired power plant to generate electricity. We also suspect that once EPA enforces these new rules on new power plants, they will then be targeting existing coal-fired power plants like the ones here in Kentucky.
 
EPA has also enacted overreaching standards as part of the review process for mining permits. Then-EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson even admitted that “no or very few valley fills are going to be able to meet this standard.”
 
The sad thing about this process is that all of these standards to eliminate the mining and use of coal are being proposed by regulators without any public debate by Congress. This is a decision that should be made with more public input by our elected leaders, not by a group of regulators at EPA who determine that they want to put coal out of business.
 
It is clear that President Obama’s overzealous EPA has drawn a clear line in the sand in their assault on coal. So, ahead of the misguided protest in Louisville, we want to assure the 14,000-plus coal miners in Kentucky that we stand with them.
 
And we always will.
-Representative Ed Whitfield & Representative Jim Gooch

 

Disclaimer: The content supplied by columnists and letters to the Editor on this site does not in any way, shape or form, implied or otherwise, necessarily express or suggest endorsement or support of any of such content, statement, or opinions therein. SurfKY News does not necessarily adhere to or endorse content provided by outside non-staff sources.

 

 

 

 

LIKE SurfKY on Facebook - Click here to LIKE us now.

© Copyright 2015 SurfKY News Group, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, or rewritten without permission. SurfKY News encourages you to share this story on social media.

In Other News...

Daviess County: Through the Lens of Art - A Bicentennial Event

DAVIESS COUNTY, Ky. (5/5/15) — "Daviess County: Through the Lens of Art," a major event in Daviess County's year-long… Read More

Owensboro Public Hearings, Meeting Scheduled for Today

OWENSBORO, Ky. (5/4/15) — The following public hearings and meeting are schedule to take place in City Hall, May 5,… Read More
1 DOW 17,928.20
-142.20 (-0.79%)    
2 S&P 2,089.46
-25.03 (-1.18%)    
3 NASDAQ 4,939.33
-77.60 (-1.55%)    

Most Read This Week

April 28, 2015 4275

Search for Stolen Vehicle Ends with Woman Charged…

by SurfKY News
April 28, 2015 3430

Man Charged with Stalking Smoke Shop Clerk

by MPD
April 30, 2015 2910

Family Says 'Goodbye' to Dog After It Allegedly…

by Doreen Dennis, SurfKY News
April 30, 2015 2838

Carhartt to Invest Millions in Hanson…

by SurfKY News
May 05, 2015 2817

School Board Studies Further Spending Cuts

by Charles W. Riley II, SurfKY News

Most Read This Month

April 17, 2015 15794

An Open Letter from an Addict

by Olivia Kirks
April 23, 2015 8561

Man Charged with Sodomy, Incest/Victim under 12

by SurfKY News

Stories Trending Now

May 05, 2015 2817

School Board Studies Further Spending Cuts

by Charles W. Riley II, SurfKY News
May 05, 2015 2689

Meth Charge Follows MPD Investigation into…

by SurfKY News
May 05, 2015 1131

First United Bank Becomes Hopkins School System’s…

by Tammy Holloway, SurfKY News
May 05, 2015 921

Madisonville Man Goes to Hospital after…

by SurfKY News
May 05, 2015 694

Madisonville Police Arrest Reports - May 5, 2015

by SurfKY News
May 05, 2015 690

Baptist Health Madisonville Establishes Foundation

by Kristy J. Quinn
May 05, 2015 585

Two on Moped Injured in Collision with Car

by Doreen Dennis, SurfKY News
May 05, 2015 404

SurfKY Spotlight: First Kentucky Bank

by Gary Gates, SurfKY News
May 05, 2015 337

May 2015 In-House Rabies Clinics' Schedule

by Barry L. Franklin
May 05, 2015 331

Kentucky Lottery Results for Monday May 4, 2015

by Kentucky Lottery