The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recently proposed emission regulations governing existing coal-fired power plants.
If enacted, the regulations would require existing coal-fired plants to comply with emission levels that are unrealistic with current technology. As a result, hundreds of power plants across the country would be forced to close, with significant negative consequences for the energy industry and the economy. Not only would the regulations eliminate thousands of jobs in the coal industry, but the effects would also infiltrate all sectors of the economy.
With fewer coal plants to supply, many companies that support this industry would be forced to lay off employees and further burden unemployment agencies. Job loss would be widespread, especially in the heavy coal-producing regions of Pennsylvania, and would negatively impact our state’s economy as a whole.
Additionally, consumers would see electricity prices skyrocket, and it is estimated it could double for every residential consumer.
Another problem at stake is that the reliability of our electric supply would be threatened and we would be vulnerable to blackouts across the state.
While it is important to protect the environment, there is a responsible way to do so without eliminating jobs and causing harm to the economy. The EPA should withdraw its regulations and work with industry officials to create policies that benefit both the environment and the economy alike.