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Dems’ Reconciliation Bill Raises Electricity Bills, Lowers Grid Reliability 

Buried inside the massive $3.5 trillion reconciliation bill is a plan to bury America’s coal industry and, along the way, bury homeowners and businesses under higher electricity bills. And that’s assuming the electricity keeps flowing under a plan that calls for the drastic goal of eliminating nearly all fossil fuel-based electricity, including natural gas and coal, by 2030.

If you don’t know what a “brownout” is, ask a Californian.

The House Energy and Commerce Committee has approved the $150 billion Clean Electricity Performance Program, along with billions of dollars in spending for electric vehicles and other Green New Deal proposals, as part of the budget reconciliation plan.

Its future is uncertain in the U. S. Senate, where members from energy-producing states like West Virginia are expressing concerns. That’s hardly a surprise.

And given the goal is to shut down the entire domestic coal industry, let alone phase out the gas industry, it’s also not a surprise that the United Mine Workers of America opposes it, too.

“West Virginia depends on coal for 95 percent of its electric power,” UMWA President Cecil Roberts wrote in a letter to Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.). “These carbon reductions would eliminate virtually all of West Virginia’s coal generation… All related coal mining and utility jobs would be lost, with severe adverse impacts on families, communities, and the local and state tax revenues associated with mining, electric generation, and electric power exports.”

To continue reading, click here to view the full article on CoalZoom.com. 

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MINExpo Wrap-Up: Mining's Latest Products Revealed

Liebherr showcased its new Mining Technology Product portfolio which includes autonomous solutions for both hauling and excavation.

The portfolio aims to improve safety and productivity with machine automation, digital services and assistance systems, and on-board analytics product lines.

On-site traffic flow will also be streamlined by Liebherr as it develops vehicle-to-vehicle technologies, and load area path planning.



Liebherr's autonomous haulage solution.

Image: Liebherr

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Sandvik revealed its TH550B 50-tonne battery-electric truck, equipped with its Artisan battery pack and electric driveline.

The new battery electric vehicle (BEV) can make a pit stop in just a few minutes, disconnecting a depleted battery and picking up a new one without the operator leaving the cab.

The TH550B can also recharge through regenerative braking while tramming downhill, and infrastructure requirements are kept to a minimum.

To continue reading, click here to view the full article on CoalZoom.com. 

CoalZoom.com - Your Foremost Source for Coal News.  

 

Friends of Coal Message -- Please Act Today!

Below is a message from Chris Hamilton, President & CEO, West Virginia Coal Association

At the bottom for your awareness and use is a message we sent to the Friends of Coal (FOdata base alerting them to the WVPSC reopening of the AEP Petition to upgrade their instate coal plants and the concern over Congress passing a Clean Energy Standard (CES) or Clean Energy Payment Program (CEPP).

We asked all FOC members to file a comment with the PSC and with Senator Manchin.


As proposed, the CEPP would provide monetary incentives for electric generators to increase the amount of carbon-free electricity they sell by at least 4 percent annually over an 8-year period.  Fines and penalties would also be assessed to any generator failing to meet the 4-percent requirement.

Both of these issues are fast tracked and will likely be decided in the next two weeks.

Please consider a personal response and a response on behalf of your company at your earliest opportunity. We also ask that you circulate the FOC alert to your colleagues and contacts within the industry.

To continue reading, click here to view the full article on CoalZoom.com. 

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Amid Soaring Natural Gas Prices, a Boost for Coal

Electric utilities are required by law to provide power as cheaply as possible.

Over the last decade, market forces and climate policies have propelled utilities away from coal. But high natural gas prices are nudging more coal into the electricity mix.

Utilities’ fuel choices are driven primarily by the price of natural gas, said Tyler Hodge, a senior economist in the Energy Information Administration’s Office of Energy Analysis.



Power lines surround the coal-fired Dave Johnston Power Plant on June 30 in Glenrock. Higher natural gas prices have made coal a more competitive commodity in the short-term. 

Photo: Cayla Nimmo, Star-Tribune

“In the short run, that can have an effect in terms of what specific power plants dispatch to meet electricity demand,” Hodge said. “But over the long run, that natural gas price can also affect the investment decisions about what new types of power plants to build, and conversely, what types of power plants — i.e., generally coal — should be retired.”

Until the mid-2010s, coal was the dominant source of U.S. electricity generation. But as concern mounted about the climate impacts of coal, a string of breakthroughs in drilling technology, including the fracking boom, turned natural gas from an auxiliary fuel source into coal’s biggest competitor.

To continue reading, click here to view the full article on CoalZoom.com. 

CoalZoom.com - Your Foremost Source for Coal News.

               

 

CEPP: Accelerating the Grid Reliability Crisis

Senator Joe Manchin made the rounds on the Sunday talk shows this past weekend, making it clear he can’t get behind House Democrats’ proposed Clean Electricity Performance Program (CEPP), which would throw $150 billion at utilities to accelerate the pivot to renewable energy. Manchin told Chuck Todd, the plan “makes no sense at all.” He continued, “We are going to leave ourselves in a situation by 2030 that we are not going to have reliability. That’s what I’m concerned about.”

He’s right to be concerned, and his concerns reflect those shared by American voters. According to recent polling from Morning Consult, 72 percent of Americans are now concerned that the speed of the transition to variable sources of power is coming at the cost of grid reliability.

Even more, his concerns echo those coming from regulators and utilities themselves. American Electric Power, one of the nation’s largest utilities, wrote in a letter to congressional offices and made public this week that the CEPP would “adversely impact the reliability and resilience of the electric grid,” adding that it forces utilities to move “too rapidly.”

Yet, despite those warnings from those charged with keeping the lights on, accelerating the energy transition – without any plan for reliability – is exactly the proposed path forward from some members of Congress, and that path is being taken absent discussion or planning. The CEPP is an incentive program on steroids that, if implemented, could dismantle grid reliability even as energy markets send unmistakable signals to reinforce it.

To continue reading, click here to view the full article on CoalZoom.com.

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