U.S. Senator Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) sent a letter to the White House last Thursday urging that the Administration amend the proposed EPA new source performance standard (NSPS) regulations. As drafted, EPA's regulations for new fossil fuel-based power plants would effectively ban any new coal-fired plants from being built in the US. The proposed regulation would require new coal-fueled power plants to meet the same emissions standards as new gas-fired plants.
"EPA's choice to hold coal and gas to the same emission standard is unprecedented under the Clean Air Act, and is yet another example of EPA overreach by the Obama Administration," Senator Manchin said. "Not only would this rule have a devastating effect on our coal production, this rule would endanger the reliability and sustainability of our electricity supply.
"I have said again and again that government needs to work as an ally, not as an adversary, when it comes to developing our nation's energy policy. President Obama's EPA is departing from decades of clean air policy, attempting to force incredibly expensive and impossible to achieve standards on coal, with no benefit. After all, experts agree that emissions from all U.S. power plants have only a tiny impact on global emissions, and this already small share is shrinking every year, as China, India, and others dramatically scale up their fossil fuel use."
Senator Manchin was joined by Senators Joe Donnelly (D-IN), Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND) and Mary Landrieu (D-LA) in writing a letter to the White House urging them to revise the EPA's rule and return to using different emission standards for gas and coal, a system that has worked for decades.
Full text of the letter is available in PDF format below: