Sierra Club proud they’re putting miners out of work
I was recently interviewed by CNS News and asked for comment on the joint Sierra Club, Bloomberg media event (held on April 8th). In this event former NY mayor Michael Bloomberg and senior Sierra Club staffers, like CEO Michael Brune, exulted in their ability to pour tens of millions of dollars into misleading pressure campaigns, aimed at putting coal industry workers into unemployment lines. The gist of their recently expanded campaign is to spend Mr. Bloomberg’s $80 million, along with tens of millions of matching donations, “to shutter 50 percent of (coal) plants by 2017.”
As I noted in both a CNSNews.com article and blog post there must be a fundamental sickness lurking in any mind or heart that takes such joy in shutting down productive, beneficial businesses. Especially businesses that provide Americans with an essential service like abundant, affordable, reliable, and increasingly clean electricity.
But Jason Hayes, associate director of the American Coal Council, said that Bloomberg’s claim of the benefits of stopping coal production ignores the cost to tens of thousands of American workers.
“Tens of thousands of people are being put out of work, and (what is) even worse is that they’re bragging about it,” Hayes told CNSNews.com. “That, to me, is fundamentally sick: to brag about putting people out of work.”
“One wonders if the Sierra Club is going to put any of Mr. Bloomberg’s multimillion dollar gifts to work helping these miners and families get retrained, or to help them pay their bills,” said Hayes. “Or will they continue to enjoy their six- (or more) figure salaries and comfortable homes while they continue their campaigns to put more American miners out of work and shut down America’s industry? I think we both know the answer to that question.”
And, in the blog post,
“So the Sierra Club and Bloomberg were effectively bragging today about their collective ability to put 23,200 American miners out of work,” Jason Hayes, associate director of the American Coal Council trade association, told CNSNews.com.
“One wonders if the Sierra Club is going to put any of Bloomberg’s multimillion dollar gifts to work helping these miners and families get retrained, or to help them pay their bills,” Hayes said.
“Or, will they continue to enjoy their six (or more) figure salaries and comfortable homes while they continue their campaigns to put more American miners out of work and shut down America’s industry?”
Sadly, the impacts won’t stop at just coal miners and utility workers who are being forced onto unemployment. The costs of the Sierra Club’s lavish spending and efforts to stop American business will hit the poor and elderly first, and hardest. As noted in the NMA’s response to the Sierra Club’s ghoulish gloating,
“The Sierra Club today may thank the Bloomberg Foundation for an additional $30 million to fight affordable energy,” Quinn said. “But families across the country facing higher utility bills won’t be so grateful.” In NMA’s press statement, Quinn said the Club and the foundation favor policies that have contributed to the rising cost of providing base load electricity to the poorest Americans. “There is no reason to celebrate raising costs for society’s most vulnerable,” he said.
The Sierra Club, Mr. Brune, and Mr. Bloomberg may attempt to shield themselves with claims that they are ‘stopping climate change’ or some such thing. However, the reality is that, even if the U.S.A. manages to achieve the CO2 reductions sought in Obama administration GHG reduction plans for existing coal-fueled power plants, the world would (in theory) avoid “Less than two one-hundredths of a degree Celsius by the year 2100. 0.018°C” To attempt to put that number into context, there is no thermometer on the planet today that can accurately measure that minuscule a change in temperature.
Despite that reality, Mr. Bloomberg and Mr. Brune see no problem in putting over 20,000 American miners out of work and targeting tens of thousands more with their lavish anti-coal marketing campaigns. As I noted in my interview with CNSNews.com,
“February 2014 numbers indicated that coal jobs had gone from 94,000 in Q4 [fourth quarter] 2011 to 77,000 in Q1 [first quarter] 2014,” Hayes said, adding that statistics from the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics “indicates that to March 2015, that number has continued to drop down to 70,800.”
Hayes pointed out that the average annual salary of a U.S. coal miner is $82,058, “meaning the Sierra Club has effectively removed $1,903,745,600 in salaries and benefits from American workers.”
So these anti-coal groups spend tens of millions to stop almost two billion in productive activity and then they have the gall to stand up in front of the media and gloat over the fact that they are stepping up their campaign to do even more damage.
Again, this is fundamentally sick.
“The ‘work’ that these green groups are doing is a destructive attack on American productivity and jobs,” Hayes said. “Even the most simple calculations indicate that they are costing the American economy billions in lost jobs and investment.
“They should be called out for the damage they are causing,” he said.