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article imageOp-Ed: Dumbest move yet— Saving coal plants in name of national security

By Karen Graham     Jun 1, 2018 in Politics
U.S. President Donald Trump has directed Energy Secretary Rick Perry to take emergency steps to keep coal and nuclear power plants running, the White House said Friday.
In a draft memo obtained by Bloomberg News, the Department of Energy may order grid operators to buy electricity from coal and nuclear plants that are at risk of shuttering due to the increased use of cheaper natural gas and renewable electricity sources.
(Read the Memo Here)
According to the memo, the Energy Department is to instruct grid operators to purchase power from a list of designated plants. This intervention would last for two years, allowing time for a federal study of vulnerabilities in the U.S. energy delivery and grid system.
The two-year time-frame would also allow time for this ridiculous action to be fully implemented while Trump is still in office, making good on his campaign promise to revive the ailing and half-dead coal industry in this country.
As a matter of fact, we can put the blame for this on Democratic Senator Joe Manchin of West Virginia, a major coal-mining state and also a state with a high incidence of miners with Black Lung disease.
In a statement on Friday, Manchin was crowing like a rooster in a hen house, praising Trump for using his idea. “I am glad President Trump and his Administration are considering my idea to use the Defense Production Act to save coal-fired power plants with emissions controls and protect our national security,” Manchin said.
The move by Trump is also in line with some of his top supporters, including coal moguls Robert E. Murray and Joseph Craft of Alliance Resource Partners, who donated a million dollars to the president’s inauguration.
“This action is essential in order to protect the resiliency and reliability of our nation’s electric power grids,” Murray said Friday in an email.
US Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) speaks during a news conference on Capitol Hill  February 6  2014 in Wash...
US Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) speaks during a news conference on Capitol Hill, February 6, 2014 in Washington, DC
Mark Wilson, Getty/AFP/File
Proposed action faces big backlash
Joint statements were released on Friday from a coalition of oil, gas, solar, wind and energy efficiency trade groups, denouncing the plan as "misguided," a rather nice word for describing what I would call an asinine plan.
“We strongly urge the administration to reject this ill-conceived draft plan and adopt a policy approach that promotes market forces and competition in our nation’s power system,” Todd Snitchler, director of market development at the American Petroleum Institute, said.
The bottom line is as plain as the nose on your face - It is another Trump ploy to get what he wants from this country, come hell or high water. Nothing more and nothing less. And it is the biggest dumb move by this administration I have seen, at least since yesterday - when Trump effectively made all our allies angry with his ridiculous trade tariffs.
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of DigitalJournal.com
More about National security, Trump, energy department, Bailout, coal plants
 
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