Today the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced new regulations that would cut U.S. carbon emissions from power plants by 30% of 2005 levels by 2030. And this would mainly target the 600 coal-fired power plants that exist today, closing hundreds in favor of new, less-polluting energy sources.
Since STL is headquartered in the Bluegrass State, we know that coal is an essential part of our economy as implied by Democratic Senate Candidate Ms. Alison Lundergan Grimes today in Covington, KY. As the NYT reports:
On Monday, Ms. Grimes pledged to “fiercely oppose the president’s attack on Kentucky’s coal industry” if elected.
Running against Senate Minority Leader, Mitch McConnell, in a fierce battle for votes, even a Democrat is coming out against the EPA’s announcement today for the supposed “war on coal” is such an important issue here.
So this whole issue has me pondering a complex question: what would become of Appalachia if these cuts go through?
Eastern Kentucky is one of the poorest regions of the U.S. and there only reliable industry is coal mining. So what should be done about these people barring significant and costly social programs that have been failing the area for decades. I am all for the protection of the environment at almost all costs due to the gravity of the situation, but I am also concerned about the poorest people of the Commonwealth.
So I am making a call to all those who read/follow this blog to comment on how this conundrum can be solved. What do you say?