ACC statement on EPA’s revised carbon regulation
Washington, D.C. – The American Coal Council (ACC) released the following statement regarding the release, earlier today, of the EPA’s carbon pollution standards for new power plants.
The release of the EPA’s revised carbon pollution standard for new power plants today sets an emissions limit for coal of 1,100 lbs of CO2/MWh. This is a level that cannot be met given current technology. Thus, the practical effect of such a rule would be to stop the construction of any future coal-fueled generation capacity in the U.S.
Unfortunately, the proposed rule will also stymie future research into clean coal technologies and/or carbon capture utilization and storage. Is this an unintended consequence, or an intended one?
America is fortunate to have plentiful energy resources, including nearly 30% of the world’s coal reserves. Coal today accounts for 40% of U.S. electric generation, more than any other fuel source, due to its abundance, reliability, and affordability. Coal is essential to the health of our economy and our global competitiveness.
Limiting fuel choices for new electric generation in America is ill-advised energy policy. Taking coal out of the future U.S fuel mix increases exposure to market fluctuations of other fuel sources. That translates to increased volatility and risk when it comes to electricity prices for American consumers and businesses.
A workable energy policy will recognize the strength inherent in a diverse energy portfolio – an “all-of-the-above” concept, as has been so widely discussed. It should encompass a partnership between government and industry, a partnership that has in fact already been the pattern for decades in achieving technology solutions for emissions reductions of NOX, SOX, mercury, and particulate matter.
The EPA’s revised rule will cost the nation tens of thousands of well-paying jobs, reduce energy options, limit our energy security, negatively impact American ability to compete in world markets, diminish our technological lead in clean energy generation, and increase the cost of electricity for Americans. That does not strike a balance between economic and environmental goals. We can do better, and we must.
The American Coal Council represents the collective business interests of the coal industry ~ from the hole-in-the-ground to the plug-in-the-wall ~ including coal suppliers, coal consumers (utility & industrial), energy traders, coal transportation companies and coal support service firms. ACC provides relevant educational programs, advocacy support and peer-to-peer networking forums to advance members’ commercial and professional development interests. Additionally, ACC advocates for coal as an economic, abundant and environmentally sound fuel source.