(Washington, D.C.) – Congressman Larry Bucshon, M.D. (IN-08) released the following statement after introducing the Electricity Reliability and Fuel Security Act, which provides a temporary tax credit to cover a small portion of the operation and maintenance expenses of existing coal-fired power plants:
“Today, coal-fired power generating plants are being closed at an alarming rate. Since 2010, almost 108,000 megawatts of coal-fired generating capacity has shut down or announced plans to close. Indiana alone ranks second among all states with 39 coal-fired electric generating plants having already retired. Without the reliable baseload power provided by coal-fired generation, the power grid may not be able to handle the electricity needs of American consumers during a sustained period of peak demand like 2014’s Polar Vortex or the recent Bomb Cyclone.
“As a supporter of an all-the-above energy strategy, I believe that power generators should rely on a diverse mix of fuel sources. Coal-fired generation is one of the most reliable, resilient, and affordable sources of energy. However, federal policies are distorting the energy marketplace and creating an unlevel playing field that favors less reliable, less resilient, and less affordable sources of electricity.
“It is critical that we ensure our nation enjoys a reliable and resilient grid, and that consumers continue to have access to affordable and reliable electricity. The Electricity Reliability and Fuel Security Act will help achieve this by leveling the playing field and help avoid more coal-fired power plant retirements while Congress, the Department of Energy, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, grid operators, and the North American Electric Reliability Corporation continue working together to ensure that the nation’s electricity grid is both reliable and resilient.”