War on coal a myth

The Sun-Gazette’s continued War on the Truth in regards to President Obama’s “War on Coal” is disturbing. The latest U.S. Energy Administration (EIA) report on coal dated November 2012 shows employment in the coal industry increased 4.8 percent in Pennsylvania from 2010 to 2011 and overall in the US 6.3 percent in the same period.

U.S. coal production in 2011 increased slightly from 2010, driven by export demand, to roughly 1.1 billion short tons. The average sales price of coal increased 15.2 percent to $41.01 per short ton.

Market forces with the sharp decline in natural gas prices, the rising cost of coal, and reduced demand for electricity are all contributing factors in the decisions to retire some coal-fired generating units. These trends started well before EPA issued its new air pollution standards.

The Sun-Gazette and the coal industry ignore the down stream costs of using coal including black lung disease and asthma among other diseases. Coal plants are the nation’s top source of carbon dioxide, sulfur dioxide, and mercury. The health and global warming costs must be considered when factoring the use of coal.

Howard Best


Submitted by Virtual Newsroom