Coal: Just the Facts

President John Adams once famously said, “Facts are stubborn things; and whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations, or the dictates of our passions, they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence.”

For the last eight years, the White House has relied on its own wishes and inclinations to disparage coal-based electricity while ignoring its benefits as an abundant, cost-saving energy resource.

This administration has exaggerated claims and turned to hyperbolic messaging to argue its points.  The biggest threat facing the United States, the president claims, is not the threat of global terrorism or financial insolvency; it’s climate change.  EPA has engaged in double-talk, stating “we are transitioning away from coal because coal is no longer marketable,” only to be followed by “[there’s not] one single bit of evidence that we have destroyed an industry or significantly impacted jobs other than in a positive way.”

This is not the hallmark of leadership or sticking to the facts.  This is evidence of the willingness to say or do anything to make a political point.

Despite our national economic uncertainty, the administration has remained intent on imposing onerous regulations through its unreasonable, costly Power Plan on our nation’s power plants, effectively passing cost increases on to consumers who are already struggling to make ends meet.

Fortunately, earlier this year, the Supreme Court issued an unprecedented “stay” on the plan. This ensures EPA cannot implement its sweeping mandate until the federal court system has determined whether it is constitutional—a ruling that may come in 2017 at the earliest.

This is a fortunate development for Americans everywhere as the plan is guaranteed to debilitate state economies and harm ratepayers and businesses through dramatically higher electricity costs. That’s because the regulation is specifically designed to shut down coal-fueled power plants, which provide nearly 35 percent of the country’s electricity. If this abundant, affordable, and reliable energy source is eliminated, the resulting shockwaves will be felt across the entire economy.

Despite the justified timeout from the nation’s highest court, the administration, several state leaders and coal-based electric detractors remain intent on pressing ahead and removing coal from our nation’s energy portfolio.

Lawmakers have a responsibility to fully understand the issues at play especially when the administration and its allies seem intent on pushing a position that defies logic.

To that end, we need to open the dialogue to understand the economic realities of our energy mix and our usage of these sources. Coal Facts, a new online resource, strives to do just that by bringing to light the truth the administration seeks to bury.

In the spirit of John Adams, we hope that our leaders, the media and public will rely on this resource, rather than political agendas, to advance the facts and not the hyperbolic messaging this administration relies on so heavily.

Morning Consult