EPA’s New Restrictions on Coal Plants to Kill Nearly a Million Jobs

Guest post by M.D. Kittle

Leave it to the Environmental Protection Agency to come up with regulatory standards so restrictive that the technology to meet them has yet to be commercially tested.

As expected, the EPA on Friday unveiled its revised proposal to cap greenhouse gas emissions from new power plants. And as expected, coal-fired power plants will fail to meet the limits without some very expensive technology to capture and store carbon emissions.

“There’s the rub. No commercial, coal-fired plant worldwide has yet to use this technology,” notes a story in USA Today.

As the piece points out, there are least two such carbon storage power plants under construction — one in Canada’s Saskatchewan Province, and the other in Mississippi’s Kemper County, scheduled to open in May.

But the coal-fired power industry need only look to Mississippi for a cautionary tale. The $ 4.7-billion project has been saddled with at least $ 1 billion in cost overruns, “a stew of legal battles, a revolt by ratepayers and a credit downgrade for the local utility,” according to Bloomberg News story published Thursday.

And, as the story points out, consumers ultimately will foot the bill for the expensive technology in the 582-megawatt plant, the first of its kind to be built on a commercial scale.

“By some measures, it may be one of the most expensive power plants ever built for the watts of energy it will generate,” Bloomberg notes. “The utility got approval to recoup $ 2.88 billion in costs from ratepayers. In addition, the Department of Energy pledged $ 270 million, and the company qualified for a federal tax credit of $ 133 million. The costs of the new lignite mine and carbon dioxide pipelines are additional.”

Coal industry officials earlier this week told Watchdog.org the restrictive limits on CO2 could kill coal, and with it, many of the 800,000 good-paying jobs it supports.

“That is the area that is really going to put this conversation at the forefront,” said Nancy Gravatt, spokeswoman for the National Mining Association, which represents coal and mineral mining companies nationwide. “This puts thousands of middle-class jobs at risk, and it’s akin to an energy tax on consumers. The hardest hit would be those on fixed incomes, like retirees.”

EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy said Americans have a “moral obligation to the next generation” to protect the environment. She said the proposal is a “necessary step to address a public health challenge,” according to the USA Today story. McCarthy, in a speech Friday morning at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C., said the proposed standards create a “path forward” for the coal industry, and that the CO2 limits are both achievable and flexible.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce in a statement basically said the EPA blew it.

“The EPA had the chance to craft a regulation that recognized the value of the ‘all of the above’ energy strategy endorsed by President Obama, and ensured that standards were achievable and based upon commercially and economically viable technology. Instead, they have released yet another major regulation that will hamper economic growth and job creation, and could lead to higher energy costs for American families and businesses,” said Bruce Josten, the chamber’s vice president for Government Affairs.

“It is clear that the EPA is continuing to move forward with a strategy that will write off our huge, secure, affordable coal resources by essentially outlawing the construction of new coal plants.”

Jo Ann Emerson, former Missouri Republican congresswoman and now CEO of the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association, earlier this week said the administration is “gambling with the economic well-being of future generations and our nation’s economy.”

“As not-for-profit, consumer-owned utilities, electric co-ops are deeply concerned about maintaining affordable, reliable electricity. It’s worth noting that residents of rural communities already spend more per capita on energy than anywhere else,” Emerson said in a statement.

Environmentalists, of course, rejoiced.

“In the words of our Vice-President, this is a BFD,” celebrated the Sierra Club in a blog post.

“If finalized as written, the draft will make it impossible to build a new, conventional, climate-destroying coal plant in the U.S. With climate-related disasters already landing on the doorsteps of millions of Americans, from Western wildfires to Superstorm Sandy, this new protection comes as welcome news.

Jason Hayes, associate director of the American Coal Council, fully expects the proposal to be challenged in court.

“The same thing that happened with the CSAPR Rule … Everyone was going forward before it was remanded by the D.C. court,” Hayes told Watchdog.org Friday.

The U.S. Court of Appeals in 2011 vacated the EPA’s Cross State Air Pollution Rule, often pronounced Casper, and the associated implementation plans and remanded the rule back to the EPA following widespread criticism.

The coal industry and other critics of the EPA’s proposal predict the strict limits will batter a U.S. economy struggling to recover, and stall the strides the industry has made in cutting CO2 output.

“Regulators are setting the bar so high that, even the new plants with the most advanced technologies would not be allowed,” Hal Quinn, CEO and president of the National Mining Association, said in a video released Friday. “Without coal our utility bills will be higher, our industries less competitive, electricity reliability compromised, and of course tens of thousands of jobs lost.”

 

Contact M.D. Kittle at mkittle@watchdog.org.

 

Doug Ross @ Journal

Sabotage: Special Forces To Target U.S. Economy, Infrastructure, Railways, Power Plants, Waterworks, and Refineries In the Event of Mid East Conflict

special-forces3

If you were under the impression that the brewing conflict with Syria is over or that it would be a simple one sided affair with the United States launching “brief and limited” strikes on Syrian military assets, then consider the following report from a Russian military review.

According to Senior sources within the Syrian military, as well as Russian insiders, an attack on Syria will not come without repercussions here in the United States. The report, published by the widely read European newspaper Pravda and not carried by mainstream U.S. news channels, indicates that Bashar Al-Assad has been pre-positioning Syrian special operations teams inside the United States with the sole intention of disrupting our economy and causing maximum damage to critical U.S. infrastructure elements in high population areas including railways, power plants, water utilities, oil refineries and military targets.

Should President Obama launch an attack on Syria (or perhaps even Iran, Syria’s closest ally), these forces have been given orders to engage key targets on U.S. soil.

Hundreds of Syrian army special forces soldiers are currently located on the territory of the United States, ready to conduct a series of sabotage operations in case of a military aggression against Syria.

The publication lists potential targets that can be damaged, including railways, power stations, power plants, waterworks, oil and gas terminals, and military objects, mostly air and naval bases.

An anonymous source said that the diversion could be implemented in the most densely populated areas and states in order to cause maximum damage to the U.S. economy and infrastructure, simultaneously causing panic among the population.

Attacks against civilians are not planned, the anonymous source at the Ministry of Defense of Syria assured. All fighters grouped in units of three to seven people are employed by the Syrian special forces “al-Qassam” and undergone an extensive training. They are equipped to carry out sabotage operations in the United States.

The source said that the Syrian leadership has chosen this strategy based on the experience of the wars in Yugoslavia, Iraq, and Libya, where the aggression was reflected from a defensive position, which doomed these countries to failure.

If true, it’s possible that this and the threat of a Russian military response are responsible for President Obama’s back peddling on military strikes in Syria.

Save September 11th, there have been no large-scale foreign born attacks on U.S. soil in recent history. Though German submarines targeted U.S. naval assets off our coasts during World War II, America has been left generally unscathed during military conflicts since the Korean war in the 1950′s.

That will change should the United States attempt military intervention in Syria or Iran.

If this report is to be believed (and it could be nothing more than propaganda), this time around Americans will directly experience the fallout from wars we initiate in other countries, and it will come in similar fashion to what we’ve done in Iraq and Libya, and have planned to do in Syria. The targets will be the civilian population, which will be left without electricity, water and potentially even food due to lack of gasoline supplies should the handful of refineries that make it available in the U.S. be destroyed or damaged.

These critical infrastructure elements are totally exposed to sabotage. Each of them, as well as our nuclear power plants, are usually only protected by private security firms (not the military-grade kind) and local police forces. Thus, a well coordinated military style takeover of utility plants or refineries is not out of the question, and is a completely plausible scenario.

We don’t know the exact number of Syrian special forces commandos supposedly in the United States. However, even a limited strike force, combined with cyber fighters such as the Iranian backed Izz ad-Din al-Qassam, an organization that may have been responsible for last month’s NASDAQ stock exchange outage, could wreak havoc across a totally unsuspecting U.S. public.

What we know is that our life sustaining infrastructure is not secure. The U.S. government knows this and has been planning contingency operations should these areas of our country come under attack.

We also know that any disruptions to the regular flow of commerce would be disastrous, leading very quickly to panic, looting, and a breakdown in civil order.

The Syrians, Iranians and Russians know this as well, thus it only makes sense for a country with limited military resources to take this course of action should we engage them in military conflict.

If we attack Syria or Iran in the future, the American people can fully expect a direct response on U.S. soil. This could well result in our emergency response personnel being overwhelmed and without the ability to provide aid for the millions of people who would be affected within a matter of hours.

The only prudent steps to be taken by the American people are to individually plan and prepare for such events. The government will not be there to provide aid, because despite their efforts to convince us they have everything under control, nothing could be further from the truth. Isolated regional disasters like Hurricane Sandy or Katrina led to complete pandemonium in the streets.

If we can’t handle a Hurricane when we have been given a week of advance warning, what do you think will happen if our infrastructure, economy and commerce systems are hit with a coordinated military attack across the most densely populated areas of the country?


SHTF Plan – When It Hits The Fan, Don’t Say We Didn’t Warn You

STAR DRECK: EPA plans to shut down coal plants by requiring they use technology from the future that has yet to be invented

Mr. Peabody, does the Wayback Machine have a setting for the year 2030?

This past spring, EPA pulled its first attempt at a greenhouse gas emission standard for new power plants, fearing it was so draconian that it wouldn’t stand up in a federal court…

The Washington Post reports that the agency is about to take a second stab at stacking the deck against new coal-fired power plants:

According to those familiar with the new EPA proposal, the agency will keep the carbon limit for large natural gas plants at 1,000 pounds but relax it slightly for smaller gas plants. The standard for coal plants will be as high as 1,300 or 1,400 pounds per megawatt hour.

However, the average coal plant emits 1,768 pounds of carbon dioxide per megawatt hour, meaning new plants will need carbon capture and sequestration (CCS) technology–something that is a long way from being viable. Jeffrey Holmstead, who represents coal-fired power plant owners and is a former EPA official in the President George W. Bush administration, told the Post, “As a practical matter, this means that the new proposal will still stop any new coal-fired power plants for the foreseeable future.”

The International Energy Agency doesn’t expect CCS technology to be routinely used by power generators until 2030. That’s years away. In the meantime, we need to continue improving the efficiency of current coal-fired technology and continue investing in CCS research instead of writing off an abundant and economical energy source.

The only campaign promise that President Obama appears to have kept with was his 2008 pledge to make “electricity prices necessarily skyrocket“.

“Under my plan of a cap and trade system, the price of electricity would necessarily skyrocket. Even regardless of what I say about whether coal is good or bad. Because I’m capping greenhouse gases, coal power plants, you know, natural gas, you name it — whatever the plants were, whatever the industry was… [t]hey will pass that money on to consumers.”Barack Obama, 1 November 2008

He can run, he can hide, he can evade, he can blame Bush and James Buchanan. But this is one campaign promise Barack Obama actually followed through with. And you. Ain’t. Seen. Nothing. Yet.

Doug Ross @ Journal

BREAKING: Neanderthals Operated Coal-Fired Plants 120,000 Years Ago

I can only surmise that Neanderthals operated coal-fired power plants 120,000 years ago because the eco-Marxists keep telling us that cancer is caused by burning fossil fuels like coal. I wonder how the climatards — which is the term they prefer to be called, I hear — explain this report.

World’s Oldest Cancer Found in Bone of 120,000 Year-Old Neanderthal

The world’s oldest known human tumour has been found in the rib bone of a Neanderthal who lived more than 120,000 years ago.

The bone was evacuated from a site in Krapina, Croatia more than 100 years ago and has been found to have contracted the fibrous dysplasia tumour, a cancer which is common among modern-day humans…

…Researchers said it is rare to discover evidence of cancer in the prehistoric population as they were not exposed to toxins, pollution, radiation and unhealthy diets over a long period of time which has been seen to cause cancer in today’s humans.

Fibrous dysplasia in modern-day humans is the most frequent of the bone-tumours, but Frayer adds: “This case shows that Neanderthals, living in an unpolluted environment, were susceptible to the same kind of cancer as living humans.”

Well, let’s not let evidence, facts, history, logic and reason stop the de-industrialization of America. The overstuffed crook who uses the alias Richard Windsor needs to keep plenty of food on her table.

Hat tip: BadBlue Tech News.

Doug Ross @ Journal

Edible Wild Plants: Wild Foods From Dirt To Plate (The Wild Food Adventure Series, Book 1)

Edible Wild Plants: Wild Foods From Dirt To Plate (The Wild Food Adventure Series, Book 1)

Edible Wild Plants: Wild Foods From Dirt To Plate (The Wild Food Adventure Series, Book 1)

“Wild spinach about 7 feet tall and fully mature. Well-fed wild spinach is well-branched and produces a huge quantity of seeds when mature. The leaves are still edible at this stage but are reduced in quality, taking on a somewhat off-flavor. According to research on other mature plants, the leaves on these older plants retain most of their nutrients and phytochemicals as long as they are still green.” (Left: The author stands in for perspective, 2006.) Imagine what you could do with eighteen delicious new greens in your dining arsenal including purslane, chickweed, curly dock, wild spinach, sorrel, and wild mustard. John Kallas makes it fun and easy to learn about foods you’ve unknowingly passed by all your life. Through gorgeous photographs, playful, but authoritative text, and ground-breaking design he gives you the knowledge and confidence to finally begin eating and enjoying edible wild plants. Edible Wild Plants divides plants into four flavor categories — foundation, tart

List Price: $ 24.99

Price: $ 14.77

Related Edible Plants Products