Research

It Didn’t Work For Coal In Ohio

Obama’s Policies Are Killing Coal Plants And Leaving Ohioans Without Jobs

OBAMA’S PUNITIVE REGULATIONS FOR POLLUTION CONTROL ARE ADVERSELY AFFECTING THE FUTURE OF AMERICA’S COAL COMPANIES

The EPA’s Maximum Achievable Control Technology (MACT) Requires Coal And Oil Fired Power Plants To Reduce Pollutant Emissions By Requiring Lower Mercury And Other Toxic Emissions. “That change, called the Maximum Achievable Control Technology, or MACT, rule requires that coal- and oil-fired power plants reduce pollutant emission rates significantly. The rule, which operates under the Clean Air Act, does not stipulate a lower level of carbon output. But by requiring lower mercury and other toxic emissions, it would reduce carbon as well.” (Lisa Desjardins, “The War Over Coal Is Personal,” CNN, 7/17/12)

According To The Electric Power Research Institute, One In Five Coal Plants May Be Too Costly To Retrofit With The Required Pollution Control Technology. “Across the nation, one in five coal power plants may be too costly to retrofit to reduce air pollutants such as mercury, according to the Electric Power Research Institute.” (David Shaffer, “Minnesota Ponders Fate Of Aging Coal-Burning Power Plants,” Star Tribune, 8/8/12)

Energy Information Administration Expects 175 Coal-Fired Generators To Retire Between 2012 And 2016. “Plant owners and operators report to EIA that they expect to retire almost 27 gigawatts (GW) of capacity from 175 coal-fired generators between 2012 and 2016. In 2011, there were 1,387 coal-fired generators in the United States, totaling almost 318 GW. The 27 GW of retiring capacity amounts to 8.5% of total 2011 coal-fired capacity.” (“27 Gigawatts Of Coal-Fired Capacity To Retire over The Next Five Years,” Energy Information Administration, 7/27/12)

  • EIA: “Coal-Fired Capacity Retirements Expected To Occur in 2012 Will Likely Be The Largest One-Year Amount In The Nation’s History.” “The coal-fired capacity expected to be retired over the next five years is more than four times greater than retirements performed during the preceding five-year period (6.5 GW). Moreover, based on EIA data, the approximate 9 GW of coal-fired capacity retirements expected to occur in 2012 will likely be the largest one-year amount in the nation’s history.” (“27 Gigawatts Of Coal-Fired Capacity To Retire over The Next Five Years,” Energy Information Administration, 7/27/12)
  • “Most Of The Coal-Fired Generator Retirements Will Occur In The Mid-Atlantic, Ohio River Valley And The Southeast.” (Michael Bastasch, “Record Number Of Coal-Fired Generators To Be Shut Down in 2012,” Daily Caller, 7/28/12)

111 Coal Power Plants Closed From 2009-2012 . “But in the past two years, an increasing number of coal-powered electricity plants across the country have announced closures. Estimates vary, but banking and industry analysis firm Credit Suisse put expected and known closures for 2009-2012 at 111 plants, that’s one-fifth of the nation’s nearly 500 coal plants.” (Lisa Desjardins, “The War Over Coal Is Personal,” CNN, 7/17/12)

REGULATIONS IN PLACE AND COMING DOWN THE PIPELINE FROM OBAMA AND HIS ADMINISTRATION ARE PUTTING COAL INDUSTRY ON THE LINE IN OHIO

In Ohio, Obama’s Regulations Are Devastating The Coal Industry

90 Percent Of Ohio’s Power Generation Comes From Coal Plants. “Ohio, with 90 percent of its power from coal combustion, is on the hot seat.” (Steve Bennish, “Greenhouse Gas Regulations Target Ohio Coal Power,” Dayton Daily News, 1/18/11)

Dayton Daily News: “With An Estimated $9.6 Billion Price Tag, The Rules Rank Among The Most Expensive In The EPA’s History.” (Steve Bennish, “EPA Rules To Force Old Coal Plants To Adapt, Close,” Dayton Daily News, 1/6/12)

Ohio Resident Amanda Sedgmer: “If You Ask Anybody In The Coal Industry What Would Happen If Obama Is Re-Elected, They’d Say The Coal Industry Is Done.” “Amanda Sedgmer, mother of five and daughter of coal country, believes that in this presidential election, her way of life is at stake. ‘If you ask anybody in the coal industry what would happen if Obama is re-elected, they’d say the coal industry is done,’ said Sedgmer, whose husband, Ryan, is a coal miner and whose family has depended on the industry for at least four generations.” (Lisa Desjardins, “The War Over Coal Is Personal,” CNN, 7/17/12)

  • Sedgmer Who Voted For Obama In 2008, Will Vote For Romney This Year. “Sedgmer voted for President Obama in 2008 and she is not a particular fan of Mitt Romney, but she’s voting for the Republican because she believes he is the only chance the coal industry and her community have to survive.” (Lisa Desjardins, “The War Over Coal Is Personal,” CNN, 7/17/12)

OHIO COAL COMPANIES ARE CLOSING, COSTING PEOPLE THEIR JOBS

First Energy

Last Week, FirstEnergy Announced They Will Reduce Operations At Its Sammis Coal-Fired Power Plant On September 16 Affecting 440 Workers. “Akron’s FirstEnergy Corp. intends to reduce operations at its giant W.H. Sammis coal-fired power plant because the electricity is not needed. Minimal operations will begin Sept. 16 at the plant southeast of Akron in Jefferson County and will affect 440 workers, company spokesman Mark Durbin said Thursday.” (Bob Downing, “FirstEnergy To Cut Back Operations At Sammis Power Plant,” Akron Beacon Journal , 8/17/12)

  • Workers At The Sammis Plant Will Be Assigned Temporary Work At Other FirstEnergy Power Plants. “The workers at the plant will not be laid off, he said. A small crew will remain at work at the Sammis plant, in Stratton on the Ohio River south of East Liverpool. Other workers at the plant will be assigned temporary work at projects at FirstEnergy’s other power plants, he said. They were notified Wednesday.” (Bob Downing, “FirstEnergy To Cut Back Operations At Sammis Power Plant,” Akron Beacon Journal , 8/17/12)
  • The Sammis Plant Is FirstEnergy’s Largest Power Plant In Ohio. “The Sammis plant, with its seven boilers, is FirstEnergy’s largest power plant in Ohio and the utility’s second largest plant overall, behind the 2,460-megawatt D. Bruce Mansfield Power Station with its scrubbers in Shippingport, Pa.” (Bob Downing, “FirstEnergy To Cut Back Operations At Sammis Power Plant,” Akron Beacon Journal , 8/17/12)

According To FirstEnergy Spokesman Mark Durbin, The Cutbacks Will Continue “Indefinitely” Until The Economy Improves. “The cutbacks will continue indefinitely – until the stagnant economy improves, he said. ‘It’s tough to say how long the reduced operations might last. It could be awhile. We’ll just have to wait and see,’ Durbin said.” (Bob Downing, “FirstEnergy To Cut Back Operations At Sammis Power Plant,” Akron Beacon Journal , 8/17/12)

  • Cutbacks Are Happening After FirstEnergy Already Spent $1.8 Billion Installing Anti-Pollution Control Equipment At The Sammis Plant. “FirstEnergy in late 2010 completed installing anti-pollution equipment, including scrubbers, at the Sammis plant. It was a $1.8 billion project that began in 2005.” (Bob Downing, “FirstEnergy To Cut Back Operations At Sammis Power Plant,” Akron Beacon Journal , 8/17/12)

FirstEnergy Will Begin Downsizing Its Bay Shore Plant In September; Eventually 73 Workers Will Lose Their Jobs. “Electric utility FirstEnergy Corp., Toledo Edison’s parent firm, said this week it will begin its planned downsizing of the Bay Shore plant in Oregon on Sept. 1 by permanently laying off workers. The number of workers to be laid off eventually will total 73.” (“Layoffs To Begin Sept. 1 At Bay Shore Plant,” Toledo Blade, 7/20/12)

  • First Energy Is Retiring Three Coal-Fired Generators Because Of Federal Environmental Standards Put In Place Late Last Year. “FirstEnergy said in January it would retire three coal-fired generators at Bay Shore because of federal environmental standards put in place late last year. A fourth generator that burns pet coke supplied by the nearby BP-Husky refinery will keep producing electricity and retain 81 jobs.” (“Layoffs To Begin Sept. 1 At Bay Shore Plant,” Toledo Blade, 7/20/12)

Murray Energy

OhioAmerican Energy, Inc., A Subsidiary Of Murray Energy, Announced The Closure Its Coal Mining Operations Citing Obama And His Appointees As The Reason. “OhioAmerican Energy, Inc. (“OhioAmerican”), a Subsidiary Of Murray Energy Corporation (“Murray Energy”), today announced the closure of its coal mining operations near Brilliant, Jefferson County, Ohio. Regulatory Actions By President Barack Obama And His Appointees And Followers Were Cited As The Entire Reason. ‘Mr. Obama has already destroyed 83,000 megawatts of coal-fired electricity generation in America,’ said Mr. Michael T.W. Carey, Vice President of Government Affairs for Murray Energy. ‘Electric Prices in the recent PJM Interconnection monthly auction were bid up 800 percent (8 times) for 2015-2016 because of this,’ he added.” (Press Release, “OhioAmerican Energy, Inc. Coal Mining Operation Closed In Eastern Ohio,” Murray Energy, 7/31/12)

Another Affiliate Of Murray Energy, Ohio Valley Coal Company, Recently Announced The Elimination Of 29 Hourly Jobs At Its Powhattan No. 6 Mine Citing “Regulatory Excess Of The Obama Administration As A Direct Cause Of The Layoffs.” “The Ohio Valley Coal Company announced Friday it has been forced to reduce its workforce at the Powhatan No. 6 Mine in Belmont County, Ohio. According to a news release 29 hourly jobs will be cut. The company cites regulatory excess of the Obama Administration as a direct cause to the layoffs.” (Colin Lawler, “Ohio Valley Coal Co. Announces Layoffs,” WTRF, 7/21/12)

  • General Manager Ronald Koontz: The Obama Administration’s War On Coal Is “Seeking To Destroy The Coal Industry And The Jobs Of Our Own Employees And The Livelihoods Of Their Families.” “Announcing the reduction of 29 jobs at its Powhatan No. 6 Mine in Belmont County, Ohio, General Manager Ronald Koontz attacked the Obama administration for a ‘war on coal seeking to destroy the coal industry and the jobs of our own employees and the livelihoods of their families.’” (Erich Schwartzel, “Two Coal Companies Downsize,” Pittsburgh Post Gazette, 7/20/12)

Murray Energy’s Ohio Valley Coal Company Recently Announced The Elimination Of 29 Hourly Jobs At Its Powhattan No. 6 Mine Citing “Regulatory Excess Of The Obama Administration As A Direct Cause Of The Layoffs.” “The Ohio Valley Coal Company announced Friday it has been forced to reduce its workforce at the Powhatan No. 6 Mine in Belmont County, Ohio. According to a news release 29 hourly jobs will be cut. The company cites regulatory excess of the Obama Administration as a direct cause to the layoffs.” (Colin Lawler, “Ohio Valley Coal Co. Announces Layoffs,” WTRF, 7/21/12)

  • General Manager Ronald Koontz: The Obama Administration’s War On Coal Is “Seeking To Destroy The Coal Industry And The Jobs Of Our Own Employees And The Livelihoods Of Their Families.” “Announcing the reduction of 29 jobs at its Powhatan No. 6 Mine in Belmont County, Ohio, General Manager Ronald Koontz attacked the Obama administration for a ‘war on coal seeking to destroy the coal industry and the jobs of our own employees and the livelihoods of their families.’” (Erich Schwartzel, “Two Coal Companies Downsize,” Pittsburgh Post Gazette, 7/20/12)

American Electric Power

AEP’s Ohio Picway Plant Is Scheduled For Shutdown On June 1, 2015 When Tougher Federal Air Pollution Rules Take Effect. “After nearly 60 years of producing power, the Picway plant is headed for retirement. Nestled along the Scioto River near Lockbourne, Picway is scheduled for shutdown by June 1, 2015, when tougher federal air pollution limits take effect.” (Spencer Hunt, “Coal Power Plants May Be Razed Or Sold Once Closed,” The Columbus Dispatch, 6/10/12)

GenOn Energy

GenOn Energy Will Close Its Avon Lake Coal-Fired Power Plant In 2015 Due To “Insufficient Returns” As A Result Of EPA Regulations. “GenOn Energy is moving forward with its plan to close the Avon Lake power plant in April 2015. According to an email from GenOn spokesman Mark Baird, after more review of the viability of adding additional controls to bring the plant into conformity with EPA regulations, ‘forecasted returns are insufficient.’” (Cheryl Higley, “GenOn On Track With Closing Plant In Avon Lake,” The Plain Dealer, 4/6/12)

City Schools Will Face An Annual Revenue Loss Of $3.9 Million Due To The Plant’s Closure. “Replacing the revenue generated from the plant will be crucial for the city schools, which could lose $3.9 million annually when the plant closes. Those losses come on top of state funding cuts and past devaluations of the power plant that are contributing to a projected $3 million deficit by fiscal year 2014.” (Cheryl Higley, “GenOn On Track With Closing Plant In Avon Lake,” The Plain Dealer, 4/6/12)

  • According To School Superintendent Bob Scott, The Plant Closure Is “Disheartening.” “Scott said the closure is disheartening since the district had worked to build a cushion after voters approved a 2006 levy. Before the revenue cuts, the district believed it would be able to extend the life of that money to 2014-15 or beyond. That is no longer a possibility, according to Autumn Streng, treasurer.” (Cheryl Higley, “GenOn On Track With Closing Plant In Avon Lake,” The Plain Dealer, 4/6/12)
  • School Layoffs Cannot Be Ruled Out As A Way To Offset The Revenue Losses. “The district will try to minimize the impact on education by focusing cutbacks in the administrative areas whenever possible, including reducing staff by attrition. Scott said it was too early to tell whether layoffs will be needed in 2013-14 to help offset the losses, but they cannot be ruled out.” (Cheryl Higley, “GenOn On Track With Closing Plant In Avon Lake,” The Plain Dealer, 4/6/12)

GenOn Will Close Plants In Niles, Ohio. “Ohio plants affected include those in Niles and Avon Lake, and plants retiring in Pennsylvania are in New Castle, Portland, Shawville, Titus and Elrama. The closures will occur between 2012 and 2015.” (Chelsea Miller, “7 Coal-Powered Plants To Close In Ohio And Pa.,” Youngstown Vindicator, 3/1/12)

Duke Energy

Duke Energy Will Close Its Walter C. Beckjord Generating Station In Clermont County. “Large Ohio coal plants will go dark within a few years. Duke Energy announced that the Walter C. Beckjord Generating Station in Clermont County east of Cincinnati will cease operating coal-fired units in 2015. The plant has produced energy for six decades.” (Steve Bennish, “EPA Rules To Force Old Coal Plants To Adapt, Close,” Dayton Daily News, 1/6/12)

  • According To Duke Energy, The New EPA Rules “Would Require Hundreds Of Millions Of Dollars – To Which Our Customers Would Be Exposed – To Bring The Plant Into Compliance.” “‘Due to the age and physical limitations of the Beckjord facility, the (new EPA rules) would require hundreds of millions of dollars – to which our customers would be exposed – to bring the plant into compliance. This fact, combined with a lower plant usage forecast, compelled Duke Energy Ohio to accelerate Beckjord’s anticipated retirement date,’ Duke said.” (Steve Bennish, “EPA Rules To Force Old Coal Plants To Adapt, Close,” Dayton Daily News, 1/6/12)