USA - Climate - Coal mining
Coal mining operation in Blair County in West Virginia. The area is full of giant mining operations, where the coal is accessed through mountain top removal.
Friday September 25th the US House of Representatives passed the RAPID act, a bill intended to speed up permitting processes for federally funded energy, infrastructure and construction projects. The bill prohibits EPA from considering greenhouse gases and effects of climate change in the permitting process, effectively rendering EPA powerless to halt projects that are harmful to the climate.
The RAPID act could make it impossible to achieve the goals in Obamas Clean Power Plan.
All the Republicans and seven Democrats voted for the RAPID act. The White House has already said the President will veto the bill.
The Clean Power Plan, announced in August, calls for a cut of carbon pollution from the power sector by 32 percent within 2030 compared to the levels in 2005. The plan is bad news for coal and good news for clean renwable energy. Coal is cheaper than other fossil fuels, but produce two and a half time more greenhouse emissions than it’s cousin natural gas. Today, all power plants running on carbon fuel account for roughly one-third of the carbon emissions in the USA, according to the US Environmental Protection Agency. The plan will for the first time put limits on carbon pollution from the energy industry in the US.