Lexington – The following statement may be attributed to Tyler White, President of the Kentucky Coal Association, regarding actions taken this week by the President of the United States of America with regards to the Energy Independence Executive Order:
The Kentucky Coal Association is pleased to see President Trump’s Energy Independence Executive Order. This is another example of this administration’s commitment to the American people by taking steps to ensure American policies are not stifling growth and development by artificially limiting our ability to produce affordable and reliable energy.
Actions taken in this Executive Order are consistent with the President’s commitment to returning EPA to its core mission of protecting the environment. This will begin to return the EPA to its proper role under the Clean Air Act of actually regulating air emissions, instead of dictating to states how they should produce electricity. The Clean Air Act was not designed to allow EPA to determine how states should produce electricity. But the Clean Power Plan (CPP) gave EPA just such authority, in clear violation of the law.
The CPP was legally flawed from the beginning, and represented an unprecedented and unlawful power grab by the last Administration. We were confident the CPP ultimately would have been struck down as illegal by the Supreme Court. The Supreme Court already recognized there were substantial legal questions raised by the rule and that it risked causing great harm to the economy, and the Court took the nearly unprecedented step of staying the rule.
Many states like Kentucky have wisely ignored the CPP while it has been stayed by the Supreme Court. It is our hope that with this new action from the administration, all states will put this behind them and focus instead on providing affordable and reliable electricity to grow their economies and give their citizens the best chance to achieve upward mobility. Here in Kentucky, we know that such affordable and reliable electricity that is fueling growth comes from coal.
For too long this country has been victim to policies that limit our growth by overregulation. Policies put into motion by the former Administration, like the Clean Power Plan, would have provided no meaningful impact on the planet’s climate but would have had a devastating impact on the U.S. economy. We appreciate that this administration is not picking winners and losers in the energy business and is allowing coal and other fuels to compete on a level playing field.
According to the National Mining Association, “EIA recently found that unplugging the CPP would preserve 240 million tons of annual coal production (EIA AEO 2017), saving 27,700 high wage mining jobs and an additional 99,849 jobs throughout the supply chain, according to NMA estimates.”