NMA Welcomes Manchin-Whitfield Bipartisan Approach to Greenhouse Gas Rule

National Mining Association (NMA) President and CEO Hal Quinn issued the following statement in support of a bill introduced in Congress today by Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) and Rep. Ed Whitfield (R-Ky.) that would require the Environmental Protection Agency to base proposed New Source Performance Standards for electricity generators on cost-effective and commercially available technologies:

"Sen. Manchin and Chairman Whitfield have established a bipartisan approach to responsible regulation of greenhouse gas emissions.

"This bill sensibly requires that EPA base greenhouse gas emission standards for power plants on technology that is proven and commercially available. The agency's current proposal fails this obvious test for reasonable standard setting, gambling on unproven technology and risking far higher electricity costs.

"By blocking this dangerous precedent, the Manchin-Whitfield bill prevents EPA from forcing other industries to comply with unrealistic standards based on arbitrary and unproven technologies. Today's story may be about coal plants, but tomorrow's story will be about other industries if this precedent is allowed to stand.

"The Manchin-Whitfield bill also reserves an important role for Congress in setting emissions standards for existing power plants. This ensures that impacts on employment and grid reliability in each state will be considered before any attempt is made to further shrink the current fleet of coal plants that today generate more of the nation's electricity than any other energy source."

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“It would be nice if the country’s leaders would visit southern Illinois, talk to some folks, and see what kind of contribution coal is making to the local economy. It would be even nicer if those same folks -- politicians, regulators and activists -- would visit eastern Kentucky, southwestern Virginia and southern West Virginia to explain why it has become so important to them to destroy those economies and the lives of families in those regions.”

IHS Coal & Energy newsletter’s Jim Thompson in his Oct. 22 Market Commentary.