Bucshon on President Obama’s #WaronCoal

Jun 25, 2013 Issues: Energy, Jobs and Economy, Regulations

Representative Larry Bucshon (R – Ind.) released the following statement in response to President Obama’s climate change plan he announced today during a speech at Georgetown University.  Obama’s plan will undoubtedly increase electricity bills for middle class families, puts thousands of jobs at risk, drastically disadvantages American coal production, and abandons an all-of-the-above energy policy.  

Representative Bucshon (IN-08) said: 

“The plan the President announced today to restrict American energy production is more than a war on the coal industry.  It is truly a war on middle class families, the opportunity to find a good paying job and provide for your family, and the manufacturing industry that is vital to our state’s economy. 

“The President outlines what amounts to a National Energy Tax that will be levied on the backs of middle class families.  Every Hoosier that uses electricity will feel the pinch if these policies prevail. 

“At a time when many Americans are living paycheck to paycheck, our priority should be providing relief at the gas pump and expanding our affordable energy options, not restricting them. Calling for a war on coal, as the President’s climate advisor has, and pursing a radical, ideological agenda will only do the opposite.”

CLIMATE CHANGE.

Bucshon recently heard testimony from U.S. Secretary of Energy, Ernest Moniz at a Science, Space, and Technology hearing.  Bucshon asked Secretary Moniz about human CO2 production’s impact on temperature variations. 

Only 20 percent of CO2 emissions are produced in the United States.  Bucshon stressed that while he does believe the Earth’s climate is changing, he believes it is minimally affected by human CO2 production and is a normal temperature variation consistent with past periods of climate changes. In fact, studies have shown a recent stagnation in warming temperatures. (Reuters; 4/16/2013)

Bucshon also stressed the importance of developing an all-of-the-above energy portfolio, especially when it comes to research and development.  However, he made it clear that unilaterally disarming coal production when the rest of the world is investing in this form of affordable energy production will only put the United States at an economic disadvantage.  

The full interaction can be found here - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0fxqvA92-jM

THE #WARONCOAL IS DEVASTATING TO INDIANA’S ECONOMY. 

Indiana, especially the 8th District, is home to an abundance of natural resources that are vital to our state’s energy production and a vital source of high paying Hoosier jobs. 

  • 88 percent of all electricity generated in Indiana is from coal and 100 percent of the coal production in Indiana is done in the 8th District.  
  • This natural resource is vital to our state’s energy industry and supports over 3,300 direct mining jobs and approximately 12,000 indirect mining jobs. 
  • 27 percent of Indiana’s GDP is from manufacturing, which is dependent on coal-fired electric generation.
  • In 2010 Indiana mined around 36 million tons of coal and consumed nearly 65 million tons. 
  • Currently, Indiana has more energy underground in the form of coal reserves than the entire United States does in the form of oil and gas reserves.
  • Indiana’s demonstrated coal reserve base of over 17 billion short tons is enough to maintain current level of production for over 500 years. 
  • The reserve base for the entire Illinois Basins, which includes Indiana coal, is over 130 billion tons is enough to meet entire U.S. coal demands for over 100 years. 

THE #WARONCOAL IS A WAR ON JOBS, MIDDLE CLASS FAMILIES, AND MANUFACTURING. 

  • Families pay 11 percent less for electricity in states where more than half comes from coal. Coal produces electricity for 48 states and 40 percent of all electricity in the United States.
  • Coal is responsible for more than 760,000 American jobs all over the country. And exports of American coal to energy-hungry parts of the globe are rapidly increasing, which means even more jobs, opportunities, and economic growth.
  • Coal also plays an important role in American manufacturing. It is used in steel, paper, cement, plastics, and helps in everything from water purification to the production of carbon fibers used in fuel cells and electronics.
  • In January of 2008, President Obama claimed that electricity rates would “necessarily skyrocket” under his plan during an editorial board interview with the San Francisco Chronicle.  “If somebody wants to build a coal-fired power plant, they can. It’s just that it will bankrupt them,” Obama said. “Under my plan … electricity rates would necessarily skyrocket.” (Politico; 4/5/12)

HOUSE ACTION. 

Republicans are taking a different approach than the President and his radical allies.  The House is working to expand and secure American energy production to keep costs low, and grow the economy, create jobs.  Here are two examples of what the House is doing to make life easier for hardworking Americans across the country and #KeepTheLightsOn. 

RECENT HEADLINES. 

“Some Democrats, including those hawkish about climate action, also worry that tough new standards on power plants could slow job growth and raise energy costs, particularly in places like the industrial Midwest that depend on cheap power from coal. But administration officials signaled that Mr. Obama had decided the risks from climate change outweighed the potential economic and political costs from taking steps to address it.” (The New York Times, 6/19/13)

“Climate scientists struggle to explain warming slowdown.” Scientists are struggling to explain a slowdown in climate change that has exposed gaps in their understanding and defies a rise in global greenhouse gas emissions.” “Weak economic growth and the pause in warming is undermining governments' willingness to make a rapid billion-dollar shift from fossil fuels. Almost 200 governments have agreed to work out a plan by the end of 2015 to combat global warming.” (Reuters; 4/16/2013). 

A climate advisor to President Obama's told the NY Times, “a war on coal is exactly what’s needed.” “Daniel P. Schrag, a geochemist who is the head of Harvard University’s Center for the Environment and a member of a presidential science panel that has helped advise the White House on climate change, said he hoped the presidential speech would mark a turning point in the national debate on climate change.  'Everybody is waiting for action,' he said. 'The one thing the president really needs to do now is to begin the process of shutting down the conventional coal plants. Politically, the White House is hesitant to say they’re having a war on coal. On the other hand, a war on coal is exactly what’s needed.'" (The New York Times; 6/25/13)