As Barack Obama continues to pivot between pet projects designed to help him “fundamentally transform” this great nation, he once again sets his sights on the coal industry. Among his first campaign promises in 2008, he assured anyone interested in building a coal-fired power plant that they will go bankrupt “because they’re going to be charged a huge sum for all that greenhouse gas that’s being emitted.”
Back then, he said that such entrepreneurs were welcome to take the initiative, despite his promise that doing so would mean economic ruin. The Obama of 2013, however, wants to rule out any possibility that another coal-powered plant will ever be built.
Reports indicate that he will release new regulations later this week that would set unrealistic goals for greenhouse emissions, effectively barring anyone from making a foray into the coal industry.
Experts say that the new restrictions are too narrow for even state-of-the-art plants, and redesigning facilities to more effectively capture the emissions would be both cost-prohibitive and involve unproven technology. Not only does Obama want to regulate any future plants out of existence; he has issued a directive for the Environmental Protection Agency to implement similar standards for existing plants by next summer.
National Mining Association CEO Hal Quinn accurately called coal “the backbone of the power grid,” noting that Obama’s actions prove “the administration discounts and does not appreciate the value of coal and how it can serve the country.”
Ross Eisenberg, Vice President of the National Association of Manufacturers, said the EPA continues to overstep its bounds as it relates to energy production.
“For the first time ever, EPA is becoming a regulator of energy,” he said. “The rule they’re putting out there is going to force choices as to which energy you use, and that’s a very disturbing concept for manufacturers, for businesses, for anybody that has to comply with these laws.”
In the end, of course, all consumers will be affected by skyrocketing power costs (which, by the way, was another campaign promise Obama managed to keep.)
While he might ultimately get his way, it won’t be without a fight from conservative legislators.
Republican Rep. Ed Whitfield of Kentucky promised that Congress is “prepping a bill that would limit new EPA carbon dioxide controls on power plants.”
Obama, unfettered by the restraints our founders ostensibly placed on the Executive Branch, will continue sidestepping the will of the people until he either gets what he wants or finally leaves office. Here’s hoping for the latter.