BLUEFIELD, W.Va. — U.S. Senator Joe Manchin is frustrated with the Obama administration.

The senator said the President Obama and the federal Environmental Protection Agency refuse to acknowledge any policy which involves coal as a long-term energy source for the country. He’s worried they are playing a dangerous game.

“They believe they can do an energy policy for the United States without fossil and that’s not accurate and not true,” Manchin said during a visit last week in Mercer County. “They are a greater denier there than anybody else who’s denying we have a climate problem.”

Manchin’s remarks came amid the announcement of Coal River Energy’s decision to shut down its operations in Kanawha, Boone, and Lincoln counties. It’s the latest in a long list of WARN notices in 2014 at mines throughout West Virginia and the Appalachian region.

“They won’t stop, they keep coming and that’s what’s horrible,” Manchin said. “When utility companies start making changes and retrofitting to gas, those are long-term changes.  The big problem we are going to have in this country is reliability.”

Manchin said he’s attempted to communicate what he believed were the direct circumstances of ostracizing coal from the nation’s energy makeup. He said he can make no traction with his concerns at the White House.

“There is still going to be a need for coal in the United States of America.  I know it’s very difficult for this administration to acknowledge that.” Manchin told MetroNews. “The big problem we’re going to have in this country is reliability. It’s Russian roulette they are playing here and the ones who get hurt the most are the elderly, the fixed income, and the poor.  I’m afraid you’re going to have a lot of people’s lives in jeopardy if we don’t get an energy policy which includes coal in this country.”

Manchin said before operators decide to shutdown an operation, he’d like to see each operation reevaluated. He said the best example was a decision by Cliff’s Natural Resources. A management change at the top of the corporate structure resulted in the reversal of plans to close the Pinnacle Mine in Wyoming County. Manchin said he wanted to see more fair and honest evaluations of operations to see if other reversals could occur.

“There’s a demand for coal around the world,” he said. “There’s still going to be a need for coal in the United States of America.”

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  • Bill

    Joe "Obama" Manchin should walk the walk and not just talk the talk.

  • Ordinary WV Joe

    The esteemed Senator has no worries. He's assured of his lifetime job for as long as he wants it. And sadly, he knows it.. There is no way that the fine folks of WV will deny him, regardless of what happens in our sate or nation, politically or economically. Until the electorate comes to their collective senses and invokes voter induced "term limits", nothing will change. We, as voters, have the power to stop this madness and could easily do so within 4 election cycles (8 years). The solution is simple. Don't return any incumbent to office, regardless of the initial behind the name. One term then back home to live and work with the common folk. This would break the stranglehold of the lifetime politicians. And the stranglehold of the moneyed interests who help keep them in office. The opportunity to serve in public office is an honor and privilege, not a carer,.

  • grey4449


    • Ole Sasquatch


    • Educated in WV

      Coal is dead! Time for West Virginian's to turn the page. Manchin can blame Obama and the EPA all he wants but the switch by power plants from coal to gas is market driven.
      I've had multiple deaths in the my family due to the coal industry and their appetite for profits.
      West Virginian's forget that even during the best years of coal production WV was still ranked 50th economically. Wow, the good ole days.
      Re-education is needed for all those coal miners which will have to get new jobs.

  • C.H

    How can you say such things about Joe, he has done more for his friends and family than any other State official in history. Shame on you common folk.

  • Raging Moderate

    Let's indulge our conservative fantasies and pretend that instead if Manchin, we have your favorite conservative in that position. Being pro-coal and anti-EPA as he/she would obviously be, what different outcome would you expect? Would Obama call off the EPA because that senator NOT named Manchin asked them to? Like a senator named Capito, for example? Maybe her good looks and powers of persuasion would do the trick!

    My point is that I think those who are criticizing Manchin would be better served by criticizing Obama. It doesn't really matter who tries to make traction with Obama on coal; he's not giving in.

    Aaron is correct when he says that coal would be really struggling if the EPA didn't even exist. But I agree that it might not be struggling as much...

    • PMQ

      Natalie Tennant Has Taken $10,000 From Harry Reid’s Leadership PAC, Searchlight Leadership Fund. So, do you think she will vote against Reid? Don't think so. All I want to know, is if WV Senators will vote for Harry Reid, or not. That is all I need to know. BloJoe has not come out and said he will vote against Harry Reid. BloJoe & NataLIE speak with forked tongue.

  • mikeyd

    dont listen to nothing two faced joe says ,he is for family and friends only,

  • TB

    The Article does not mention a thing Manchin has actually done.

    • PMQ

      That is correct, it is accurate. What has BloJoe ever done??? Except pepper the State Board of Education(with wife), Mark Manchin (SBA, et al), Heather Bresch (phantom degree), Mike Garrison (sticking his ample nose in WVU business), Tim Manchin (appointments by BloJoe). Taking care of his family takes all his time. He has no time for the State of WV. Plus, now we have a Manchin v. Manchin Lawsuit where BloeJoe stiffed a brother. Wake up WV!

  • wv4ever

    I have a daughter in the coal mines and a son in the oil field. I have a daughter that works for an ecology health company vowing to protect the world for humans not to die from pollution. They all love their jobs and believe in what they are doing. Two don't vote in elections and one does. Can you guess who cares enough to get the right people in office for their career?

    • someone else

      Glad someone in your family votes for the mighty dollar as opposed to values.

  • Mr.P a JOKE!!

  • Aaron

    I hate to be the one to throw the wet blanket here but it's hard to lament the demise of coal as an energy source when Metro news is running another story by this same reporter that details how Appalachian Power plans to be in the coal business for decades.

    Manchin might have a legitimate argument if he is discussing the rising cost of electricity of coal as a result of EPA/Obama Administration actions but to claim they are killing coal is just a wee bit disingenuous.

    • The bookman

      I think Manchin's comments are all over the board, and more a collection of talking points he has heard on the range of coal topics as opposed to a coherent message.

      We have two issues. Power generation and coal production. Our coal production and the survival of our thermal coal mining industry will not necessarily be saved by the remaining 30% of power generated by plants that burn coal. There is a price per ton floor that squeezes Eastern Coal out of the market. We have all seen the 100 foot coal seams in Wyoming. That type of mining can withstand price pressures that Eastern Coal cannot. As domestic demand decreases, the price per ton will follow. Pinnacle, being a met coal mine, isn't subject to the constraints of emissions rules dampening demand, so Manchin really seemed to be scrambling for an intelligent comment. I believe it eluded him.

      • Aaron

        I understand all of that and agree. Wyoming coal has more to do with the recent WARN notices than EPA proposals. I am not saying this administration does not have an agenda regarding coal but I do not believe it has played the role in the loss of coal production many claim it has.


  • PMQ

    BloJoe, you GLEEFULLY supported O-Bum-A, in 2007-2012. You were giddy. How are you surprised now? Now you are like NataLIE Tennant, you guys are trying to run down the edge of a razor blade. Good Luck with that. I believe your political career in WV is over. Too much talking out of BOTH sides of your mouths. You are an empty suit, BloJoe. I believe the WV Electorate has finally awoke.

  • Hillbilly

    Don't waste your breath , that bunch of democrats in Washington are hell bent on destroying this country !!!!

    • I'm honest at least

      Open your eyes hillbilly..... problem 1 we elect on a monetary basis. Problem 2 politicians groomed from birth. Party lines have little to do with it as I see it.

  • GMAN

    This is to the supporters and non supporters of coal. Put aside your thoughts for a moment about the environmental issues or your feelings toward the "tree huggers"
    I've watched as mining jobs have dwindled over the past 25 years around Mingo, Wyoming, etc. Poverty is running unchecked. I've worked in many of the schools in that area, driven through every county in WV multiple times and watched what the decline in jobs has done to areas.
    Now, we are losing them by droves in Boone, Raleigh, Lincoln ++ Counties. They are on the fast track to the poverty lines as well. Quickly, these areas have four types of families living in it.
    1. Retired
    2. Welfare
    3. State and local government employees
    4. Miners holding on to the hope of a continued job.
    Only one brings in tax dollars for the county/state - which supports the first three. This cannot last long can it??
    There are a few of us that work in other fields such as construction or an engineering field, but we are outsiders - even within our own families at reunions and other events. We just cant relate to the stress of losing your ability to provide for your family with nothing else to turn to. 22 to 62 year old's with no other training.
    Families are being broken due to financial hardships or the need to move, schools and church numbers are in a nose dive. All of which will lead to higher crime and drug issues.
    Basically, from Charleston south, major issues are a brewing. These people have no options within 150 miles to provide for themselves or their families. And with fuel around $3.50 per gallon, how are they going to survive driving to an $8 per hour part time job??
    Why isn't our governor and senators out beating the bushes for industries to move into the state - locate in the south with tax incentives? Give an alternative to these West Virginians! Don't have them leave for another state. My son along with 2 of my young granddaughters has already left the mining industry for North Carolina.
    If coal comes back later, which I don't see, great! We will have diversified the region and maybe we can pull this area out of the toilet.
    {Brought to you by a Non Coal Mining Resident of Boone County of 49 years}

  • Independent View

    Joe's "honeymoon" with the Obama administration is over, he is no longer on the "A" list of Sunday talk show media outlets because for all of his "compromise rhetoric", he's just a Country Jake Senator who will vote the party line when needed. Then, he will be handed a script by his chief of staff, a former campaign manager, on how to spin his vote in a positive light to the sheep back home.
    He got his way while governor, not because of his ability to get things done, but more because he had a legislature stacked in his favor and relatives appointed to key positions in state government. He had a free hand to do as he pleased--and, he went unchallenged. Now, without a stacked deck he accomplishes nothing.
    An empty suit!

  • Mike

    So, "Prevailing Winds" Manchin is frustrated with the Disaster-in-Chief's administration. Impressive that it only took Senator Genius 6.5 years to experience such an epiphany. Too little, too late Joe.