John Ransom

Prepare for your electric rates to go up, Chevy Jolt drivers.

Under new interpretations of old rules, the EPA will shortly be forcing the shutdown of about 20 percent of coal-generated electric capacity in the United States. Since coal generates about half the electricity demanded in the US, the country will have to find other, more expensive ways of making up about ten percent of electric capacity at a time that the administration wants electric to be the clean fuel of choice.

Maybe Obama doesn’t understand that he can’t import electricity from Brazil.

In addition to the loss of generating capacity, the Commerce Department estimates that the new rules could kill up to 60,000 jobs, says Heritage, while an industry trade group says that the rules will cost $129 billion, according to the Washington Post.

During the 2008 presidential campaign then-Senators Barack Obama and Joe Biden both claimed that if elected they would institute policies that make it cost prohibitive for coal-fired plants to operate in the United States.

Looks like this is one promise they’ll keep.

“So, if somebody wants to build a coal plant, they can,” Obama told the San Francisco Chronicle in a clip the paper likely tried to suppress, “it’s just that it will bankrupt them, because they are going to be charged a huge sum for all that greenhouse gas that’s being emitted.”

While the Obama campaign scrambled at the time to say that their comments were taken out of context, Mike Carey, president of the Ohio Coal Association issued a statement that rings true today.

“Senator Obama,” said Carey in November 2008, “has revealed himself to be nothing more than a short- sighted, inexperienced politician willing to say anything to get a vote. But today, the nation's coal industry and those who support it have a better understanding of his true mission, to 'bankrupt' our industry, put tens of thousands out of work and cause unprecedented increases in electricity prices.”


John Ransom

John Ransom is the Finance Editor for Townhall Finance.
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