WASHINGTON, D.C. — The goal of a new proposed rule from the federal Environmental Protection Agency is to cut carbon emissions from existing power plants in the U.S. by a national average of 30 percent — compared with 2005 levels — before 2030.

“Climate change that’s fueled by carbon pollution is super charging risks, not just to our health, but to our communities, to our economy and to our way of life,” said EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy. “Can we cut pollution while keeping our energy affordable and reliable? Sure we can. We can and we will.”

On Monday at EPA headquarters, McCarthy detailed the 645-page draft rule that would give states differing deadlines and options for meeting emission-reduction targets that also would vary by state.

With the flexibility, states could meet their individualized targets by reducing energy demand through more energy efficiency programs, by utilizing solar, wind energy or natural gas more or by installing pollution-control technology.

“The goal is achievable because innovations in the production, distribution and use of electricity are already making the power sector more efficient and sustainable while maintaining an affordable, reliable and diverse energy mix,” read part of the proposed rule.

The full proposal is available here.

Even with the requirements in the proposed rule, officials with the EPA said the two leading sources of electricity generation in the United States would be coal and natural gas with each providing more than 30 percent of expected generation by the 2030 target date.  Currently, about 40 percent of the country’s energy comes from coal.

Critics, though, have claimed the new emissions limits will cost billions of dollars and hundreds of thousands of jobs by relying on technology that has not yet been developed while, at the same time, driving up electricity prices nationwide.

“I look at this and I see that they (the proposed emissions limits) are going to have real, harmful impacts on West Virginia, not just the coal miners specifically, but all of the indirect jobs too. It’s unacceptable because it doesn’t address the impact, the livelihood of West Virginians and our families,” said Secretary of State Natalie Tennant, a U.S. Senate candidate.



“This is cap-and-trade in another cloak,” said Second District Congresswoman Shelley Moore Capito, a U.S. Senate candidate. “This is just, obviously, West Virginia under attack. I think if we didn’t understand the term ‘War on Coal,’ I think today the declaration is in its final stages and I think it will be devastating to our coal industries, our families, our communities and other jobs.”



Both Tennant and Capito were guests on Monday’s MetroNews “Talkline” as the EPA’s proposal was released to the public.

“What is most baffling about President Obama’s new rules is that reports indicate they will only reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 1.8 percent while the global carbon emission levels are expected to increase by 31 percent between 2011 and 2030,” said Steve Roberts, president of the West Virginia Chamber of Commerce, in a statement.

“This is just unnecessarily hindering our economy while the rest of the world waves and passes us.”

State Attorney General Patrick Morrisey called the proposed rule a “sweeping and draconian proposal.” “My office will review every line, of every paragraph, or every page of this proposal and take all legal actions necessary to protect West Virginia jobs, uphold the rule of law and challenge this unprecedented attack on coal miners and their families,” Morrisey said.

In July, four public hearings on the proposed rule will be held in Washington, D.C., Atlanta, Ga., Denver, Co. and Pittsburgh, Pa.

Comments can be submitted, using the Docket ID No. EPA-HQ-OAR-2013-0602, online at www.regulations.gov, via e-mail at A-and-R-Docket@epa.gov, through fax at 202-566-9744 or by mail to EPA, EPA Docket Center, Mail code 28221T, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave., NW, Washington, D.C. 20460.

The proposed EPA rule could be finalized by June of next year. After that, states would have at least a year to craft their own plans.

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  • george

    Hey all you Union members...... How do you feel now about your dues going to the Dem. party that helps elect more dems and brings about more laws that are going to shut the coal industry down!!!!!! Time to ask some hard questions to our union leaders. Time to start thinking for ourselfs and stop being the dem. party piggy bank.

  • Derek

    This guy is a perfect example of a domestic terrorist. Nothing good comes out of Washington. Congress needs to wake up and hold these idiots responsible, they are destroying this country.

  • wow

    I wonder how people will like their Obama Kool-Aid while sitting in a dark hot room, because they can't afford the electric bill.

    • Derek

      Good point!!!

  • wow

    what is up with the picture, coal power plants DO NOT put off black smoke like the picture shows. If you want black smoke coming out of smoke stacks go to China where new coal fired power plants are being built every year. I don't know if the EPA knows this but the great wall of China is not tall enough to stop the smoke from getting back to us. These limits on our power plants on a global scale would be like trying to lower sea levels by dipping the water out of the oceans with a coffee cup.This is all grand standing to a political base.

    • Shawn H

      It is a tactic the evironmentalists use. It's like when they show "smoke" coming from stacks when reporting on an emissions story, when 95% of the "smoke" is actually steam.

  • conchop

    For years now, we've been warned about the ill effects of our CO2 emissions. Instead of heeding the warnings and planning accordingly, we've chosen to trick and deceive ourselves into believing deceivers instead of the scientists.

    Sure enough, the scientists are correct in their calculations. The deceivers continue to deceive so they can reap the returns on their investments. They have to deceive as they use the collateral value of their proven carbon reserves to perform a variety of financial operations.

    So now what? We're leaving our progeny a horrible future home, for money we have now. Technology promises many new methods of power production. Once full spectrum solar, graphene, and sugar batteries are perfected, a whole new direction will be calculated. Until then, what are you going to do? CO2 is killing us. Deceivers are killing us.

    It seems there's something to be said for sustainable living. There seems to be very little to be said for those who'd sell out their grand children's healthy future home ...

    • The bookman

      And for years we have waited, and watched, and observed the collapse of those projections. If we follow you over the cliff, we certainly will leave a progeny worse off than what we were given. Feeling good about oneself, caring for the planet, celebrating clean air and clean water is only a full time job for the environmental lobby. The rest of us live in a developed society, with combustion engines, heating and air conditioning, and electrical connections that separate us from campers. You want to drop out, and off the grid, take the leap. I'll be watching the thermometer on my personal weather station climb. Summer's coming, and it always gets warm in the summer.

      • conchop

        Typical - Mule squatting solutions from the "developed society" of WV. Got any idea at all about how to fix this CO2 problem?

        • The bookman

          The Earth takes care of "the problem," as you put it. Plants utilize CO2 in their energy process and create O2. It's called photosynthesis. There is no problem as there is no man induced warming. So why the push for a solution absent a problem?

    • Wirerowe

      We breath out co2 it is in much higher natural concentrations than man made Co2. It has nothing to do with our health. Particulates , sox carbon monoxide, NOX , lead and voc have to do with our health and as the EPA reported earlier this year emissions of all of those health related pollutants including those from coal fired power plants have been reduced in the aggregate by 67% in the last 20 years.. Our nation's air in a period of economic and population growth is dramatically cleaner and healthier than it was 20 years ago. Use another scare tactic please.

      • conchop

        Hmmm - Science seems to disagree with your statement - that no big surprise ...

        • The bookman

          It's not the science that wire has a problem, it's the politics that have soured the science. Observations have not followed the projections put forward by the IPCC. The science tells us that the projections are inaccurate. The politics tells us look away from that and prepare for Global Warming because we need to save the planet. If it were Bush and Rumsfeld pushing this agenda you'd be fighting it tooth and nail, swearing that the politicians had hijacked the science. And you would be right. Because the politicians have control of the public perception of the science.

        • Jeff

          Wirerowe isn't what you call a man of science

  • DWL

    You stupid m0r0n loving liberal, leftists, (d)'s, democrats. Economic suicide by your leader!

  • Jeff Long

    Do you have an extra 3400.00 dollars a year for your electric bills. Yes Its going to cost you more, don't forget 2001 when California Power Plants were shut down by their government. Electric bills shot out the roof, and the rolling blackouts and brownouts they put in place. Only thing there people raised cain about what was going on so their legislation changed the laws and the power plants started generation again. Only thing here when the east coast in sitting in the dark hotter that hades, I don't think Washington DC will have the good sense to change the laws. Yes Virginia and the surrounding states you will be dark and hot (summer) and dark and cold (winter).

  • JTC

    Take a ride on US Route 50 from Clarksburg to Parkersburg, that is where the battlefield for your so called War on Coal is being fought, it is going to be a Natural Gas world, the days of King Coal will fade away, deal with it.

    • Aaron

      Even THIS administration does not predict natural gas to replace coal as the leading supply of electrical generation for another 2 decades and that is if the liberal eco-terrorist can keep themselves from attacking fracking during that time span. Please educate yourself if your going to parrot the liberal agenda.

      • Imlovinit

        Eco-terrorist? Talk about parroting an agenda

  • 2XLPatriot

    Coming from a family of coal miners, union coal miners to be more specific, it is laughable that the unions urge the members to vote democrat and they end up voting themselves out of a job, knowing up front that the POTUS wants to kill coal. Laughable to the point of a crying shame. What were / are you people thinking? "Republicans want to dismantle unions but, democrats want us to vote for them and they'll regulate us out of a job." North and South Carolina, get ready for the biggest wave of unemployed, former coal mining West Virginians in history. Please teach them to stop voting like their parents and grandparents.

  • Hillbilly

    Oh , J the C , please help yourself , Oh , if you are lucky you might get a windmill in your back yard . LOL You silly people , just wait until the Affordable Care Act is fully implemented , it is all a part of the redistrubition of wealth from the middle class to the lower class . The lower class wins , the upper class wins , all on the backs of the working class . You silly fools ! LOL

  • Hillbilly

    You silly silly people . You know that when Oboma first ran for office he said he was going to kill the coal industry , but you were so taken by the new black man , you voted for him anyway . So now you are all getting just exactly what you voted for , enjoy !!! LOL

  • Ranger Rick


    • J the C

      Keep it up, Mr. President. Good job!

  • Benthere

    Instead of having a special session on an a fetal pain bill...they better get back to Charleston and begin to develop a post coal economy.

    • JTL

      They already have, they've decided to drop all of their eggs into the tourism basket which means they the state government will reap the profits while leaving the WV middle class still devastated due to job loss.

  • rick

    Vote Rebublican again....look how well it has always worked out before....what could possibly go wrong?

    • CharlieDon'tSerf

      No. Keep voting for the jackass party in November since times are so great now.

  • sammy

    The only fix. Vote straight Republican ticket in November.

    • J the C

      Great idea Sammy. I'll slash my wrists while I'm at it

      • wow

        J the C, please don't get my hopes up on the wrist thing, that would be great. One less libtard to deal with.

      • Jonesburger

        You don't have the courage or conviction to do anything pal. This nation will survive and overcome you freaks and then you may be ready to actually slash your wrists.