Obama/Casey War on Coal Blazed Through Senate

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For Immediate Release
Contact: Megan Piwowar, Communications Director
412-265-4632 or [email protected]

Smith Hits Obama-Casey Agenda on Job-Killing Regulations

PITTSBURGH – Today the U.S. Senate squandered an opportunity to put a stop to one of the most expensive Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) rules in history: the Mercury and Air Toxic Standards rule (MATS, or Utility MACT), by ignoring the bipartisan-supported Senate Joint Resolution 37 (SJR37). The resolution fell by a vote of 46-53. SJR37 was introduced by Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-OK) to prevent the Obama EPA from the threat of another job-killing regulation that would lead to higher energy costs on hardworking American families.

"I applaud Sen. Inhofe and his colleagues who supported the measure. Unfortunately for Pennsylvania and America as a whole that group did not include Sen. Bob Casey," said U.S. Senate candidate Tom Smith. "As the owner of several coal mining companies, I was on the receiving end of President Obama and Senator Casey’s costly, job-killing regulations. I saw firsthand the damage that an out-of-control government can do to an American economy struggling to create jobs. The President’s EPA has clearly declared a war on coal – an industry crucial to our economy and Sen. Casey has done nothing to support the energy industry and the Pennsylvania jobs it creates."

"Like the administration’s job killing decision on the Keystone XL Pipeline, today’s vote, under the threat of veto, is symptomatic of an energy ‘policy’ that will sacrifice American jobs to appease liberal special interest allies."


• Approximately 35 Percent of Pennsylvania Plants Will Have to Shut Down or Modernize to Meet the Regulations. "As for Pennsylvania’s plants, most upgrades have been made at the newer and larger ones. So about 65 percent of the state’s coal fired generating capacity already has controls that would meet the new regulations, said Douglas Biden, president of the Electric Power Generation Association, a Pennsylvania industry group." (Sandy Bauers, "Pennsylvania Coal Plants Face Big Changes Under Planned EPA Pollution-Control Rules," The Philadelphia Inquirer, 8/30/10)
• Regulations forcing plants to close: "In its announcement, GenOn outlined a schedule for closing 3,140 megawatts of generation capacity in Ohio, Pennsylvania and New Jersey "because forecasted returns on investments necessary to comply with environmental regulations are insufficient."("Utilities announce closure of 10 aging power plants in Midwest, East," Washington Post, 2/29/12)
• Company forced to shut down 13 percent of operations: "GenOn Energy Inc. (GEN), the third-largest U.S. independent power producer by market value, expects to shut about 13 percent of its generating capacity by May 2015 because of environmental regulations." ("GenOn Will Shut Plants Through 2015 on Environmental Rules," Bloomberg, 2/29/12)
• Companies Fault Regulations for Closures: "The company…said Wednesday that tough new environmental rules make it unprofitable to operate the plants, which generate a total of 3,140 megawatts of electricity." ("5 Pa. coal-fired power plants to close," Associated Press, 3/1/12)
• Loss of Jobs: "But Sen. Pat Toomey, a Republican, said that as many as 315 people could lose their jobs." ("5 Pa. coal-fired power plants to close," Associated Press, 3/1/12)