“I wish I could say I was shocked about this latest move by the EPA to regulate greenhouse gases – but I’m not. This EPA has not been shy about its utter disdain for the coal that powers our nation, keeps our electricity costs low and creates hundreds of thousands of jobs around the country. Today’s action continues a wrong-headed pattern of harassment by this Administration on coal miners and mining families and further puts in jeopardy the livelihoods of southern and eastern Kentuckians. If we are going to pull ourselves out of this economic mess and get our people back to work, coal has got to be part of the equation.”
A member of the Congressional Coal Caucus, Rogers has been a leading voice in Congress opposing the EPA’s “strangulation by regulation” which continues to threaten mining jobs in southern and eastern Kentucky. On Friday, March 23, Congressman Rogers joined members of the Kentucky Coal Association (KCA) and representatives from FACES of Coal in Hazard, Kentucky to discuss the future of coal and the direct and indirect impact of lost coal jobs on Kentucky’s economy. The KCA estimates for every one miner in Kentucky, three other people depend on that miner for their livelihood. Officials with the Hazard-Perry County Chamber of Commerce said local businesses have suffered due to the coal industry’s recent decline in production.
“Pink slips are flying all over the eastern Kentucky because the EPA will not issue individual permits for Appalachian mines and put our people to work, and fuel the nation’s need for energy,” said Rogers. “We are no different, and we deserve to be treated the same as the rest of the country. Our unemployed miners can’t afford furniture, vehicles or anything above the necessities, so our main street businesses and rural economies suffer as an indirect result. It is time that the EPA adhere to the federal courts that recently ruled the agency has overstepped its boundaries by holding up these permits."