Dec 02 2014
On Monday, U.S. Rep. Harold "Hal" Rogers (KY-05) urged the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to withdraw a rule from its Clean Power Plan that is designed to regulate emissions from existing coal-fired power plants and further crush the coal mining industry.
"Communities in southern and eastern Kentucky already feel the devastating impacts of these policies and currently have some of the highest unemployment rates in the nation," said Rogers. "The continued imposition of strict regulations on coal-fired power plants is forcing companies to close their doors, and lay off hardworking individuals with few other employment options."
The proposed Section 111(d) rule will force Kentucky to reduce carbon emissions from its 20 coal-fired power plants by 18% by the year 2030. In 2012, two years before the EPA unveiled its Clean Power Plan, the Kentucky Energy and Environment Cabinet projected that electricity fees in the Commonwealth would increase 25% between 2011 and 2025, resulting in roughly 30,000 lost jobs. The Cabinet also warned that increasing energy costs would cause the Commonwealth to eliminate 17,500 full-time positions in the manufacturing sector alone.
"Rather than forging a realistic path toward a thriving energy economy, the EPA has wrapped reliable energy production in red tape and effectively shuttered a crucial domestic energy," said Rogers. "This agency should join me in supporting a true 'all of the above' energy policy, and work with Congress to propel this nation forward on its path toward achieving energy independence."
Rogers' submitted his official statement regarding the costly rule during the comment period for the agency's Clean Power Plan and reiterated his frustration with the EPA for refusing to hold any of its four listening sessions in a coal producing region.
"The EPA's decision to make it difficult for those who work in the industry to express their concerns about a rule that will undoubtedly impact their livelihoods demonstrates this agency's lack of concern for the real world consequences of its actions," said Rogers.
The EPA has stated that the final rule will be issued in June of 2015.
Click here to read Congressman Rogers' full statement on the EPA Clean Power Plan.