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Wyoming Supports its Coal Industry With $1.2 Million Threat to Sue Other States

While most states pursue ways to boost renewable energy, Wyoming is doing the opposite with a new program aimed at propping up the dwindling coal industry by suing other states that block exports of Wyoming coal and cause Wyoming coal-fired power plants to shut down.

The law signed April 6 by Republican Gov. Mark Gordon creates a $1.2 million fund for an initiative that marks the latest attempt by state leaders to help coal in the state that accounts for the bulk of U.S. coal production, which is down by half since 2008.

“Wyoming is sending a message that it is prepared to bring litigation to protect her interests,” Gordon spokesman Michael Pearlman said of the fund signed into law April 6.

The law puts West Coast states and Colorado on notice — all seek to get a large share of their electricity from renewables but still get juice from aging Wyoming coal-fired power plants. The approach may run into legal troubles, though, according to one constitutional expert.

Lawsuits between states aren't unusual and often involve natural resources, such as water rights. Such cases can go directly to the U.S. Supreme Court, if the justices agree to hear them.

Last year, Wyoming and Montana — another major coal state — asked the Supreme Court to override a decision by Washington state to deny a permit to build a coal export dock on the Columbia River. The interstate lawsuit followed years of unsuccessful attempts by the dock's developer, Utah-based Lighthouse Resources, to contest the permit denial in federal court.

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Grant Awarded for Virginia's Pocahontas Exhibition Mine 

A $379,178 grant award will allow for a continuation of ongoing renovations and additions to Virginia's historic Pocahontas Exhibition Mine, state and federal officials announced Friday.

The funding award from the Abandoned Mine Lands Economic Revitalization Program will allow for continued improvements to the Tazewell County-based exhibition mine, including a guided tour by tram into the mine — the only one of its kind in Virginia.

 

Officials pose for a photograph at the Pocahontas Exhibition Mine during a presentation for a grant award.

Staff photo by Jessica Nuzzo

U.S. Rep. Morgan Griffith, R-Va., was joined by local and state officials, including representatives of Virginia’s Department of Mines Minerals and Energy, for Friday’s funding announcement.

“The Pocahontas Exhibition Mine is a unique Southwest Virginia treasure that showcases our mining heritage. This latest federal AML Pilot Project grant will advance upgrades to the property, including the addition of a tram stop to increase the site’s accessibility,” Griffith said. “As a result, the Pocahontas Exhibition Mine will become even more appealing to sightseers and a greater asset to the local economy. Continued support for the project is a boom to the town of Pocahontas and the region’s wider tourism industry.”

Griffith said the grant will fund phase II of the work that is now underway at the mine.

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‘Unsettled’ Review: The ‘Consensus’ On Climate

Physicist Steven Koonin kicks the hornet’s nest right out of the gate in “Unsettled.” In the book’s first sentences he asserts that “the Science” about our planet’s climate is anything but “settled.” Mr. Koonin knows well that it is nonetheless a settled subject in the minds of most pundits and politicians and most of the population.

 

Steven Koonin in 2011

Photo: Bloomberg

Further proof of the public’s sentiment: Earlier this year the United Nations Development Programme published the mother of all climate surveys, titled “The Peoples’ Climate Vote.” With more than a million respondents from 50 countries, the survey, unsurprisingly, found “64% of people said that climate change was an emergency.”

But science itself is not conducted by polls, regardless of how often we are urged to heed a “scientific consensus” on climate. As the science-trained novelist Michael Crichton summarized in a famous 2003 lecture at Caltech: “If it’s consensus, it isn’t science. If it’s science, it isn’t consensus. Period.” Mr. Koonin says much the same in “Unsettled.”

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President Biden's New CO2 Emission Policy is Anti-Science and the Real Existential Threat to Humanity and Nature

By Craig D. Idso, Ph.D., Chairman, Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change

Dr. Craig Idso

In addressing the Virtual Leaders Summit on Climate this past week, President Biden announced a new U.S. energy policy objective to reduce carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions by 50% over the next eight-and-a-half years, and a full 100% a decade after that. To accomplish this feat, the President promised to implement a transformative "whole-of-government approach" to change how energy is produced and consumed across all sectors of society.

So why is he doing this? What concern merits such a rapid and dramatic (and costly!) societal shift?

In a nutshell, the President and others like him insist rising emissions of atmospheric CO2 have placed the planet on a no-return trajectory toward climate apocalypse. Without immediate widespread curtailing of energy use and the scaling back CO2 emissions to net-zero, they claim global temperatures will quickly rise to "dangerous" levels and cause a host of warming-induced catastrophes (e.g., heatwaves, drought, floods, super hurricanes, etc.), unleashing the aptly-named "existential threat" of climate change on the world and its inhabitants.

But how accurate is this narrative?

As one who has professionally studied the potential impacts of rising atmospheric CO2 on climate and the biosphere for over three decades now, with absolute sincerity and certainty I can answer it is woefully inaccurate. Rising CO2 is not presently causing, nor will humanity's emissions of this trace gas into the atmosphere ever be sufficient enough to cause, dangerous global warming or any of the ancillary-related climate catastrophes so postulated by the President and others.

But how can I be so sure?

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Climate Envoy John Kerry Says No More Coal After 2030: President Biden Needs to Ignore This Advice

By Fred Palmer, Senior Fellow – CO2 Policy, Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change and Leader Saving US Coal 

Fred Palmer

“Abandon coal now or face catastrophe US envoy says” is the headline of an April 1 story in The Sydney Morning Herald covering a virtual conference hosted by IEA and the British Government. During the conference Kerry stated he “did not want to be a scold”, but the science dictates that coal use must be abandoned by 2030 worldwide or catastrophic global warming will result.

The predicted temperature outcome set by Envoy Kerry is an increase of “over four degrees” warming unless all coal plants are shut down by 2030, starting now. Ignored by Kerry is recognition that the massive coal market worldwide is back over 8 billion tons/ per year. Kerry says this huge industry so essential to human health and welfare must be eliminated, no matter the damage to people and their lives. Too, by curtailing coal based electric supply, electric costs will soar as they have in Europe and blackouts will occur around the globe, like California and Texas in the US.

The Kerry agenda in the US would have enormous adverse impacts on human health, welfare and economic activity by making US electricity scarce and expensive, reversing the enormous success of previous Presidents and the US Government on a bi-partisan basis. The National Academy of Engineering puts electrification as number one in greatest engineering achievements of the 20th Century. Credit FDR, JFK and President Cater as responsible for this achievement. And credit President Carter for the proliferation of the coal plant buildout in the US from 1978 to completion about 1985.

China, India, Japan and ASEAN countries know our history and emulate it. Many of these countries are building new coal power plant capacity, and in all instances, rely on coal to electricity for economic success and the human health and welfare of their citizens. Kerry knows this as he has met with China in the last two weeks and no doubt his rhetoric at the late March conference is designed to slow this down. But to no avail as the build out should and will continue.

All of these countries not only understand how the US succeeded from coal-based electricity, they understand that we still do.

For example, in West Virginia alone there are 8 coal plants providing electricity, one of life’s essentials, both to the citizens of the State and also the PJM pool. West Virginia citizens get almost 90% of their electricity supply from coal plants: are the citizens of West Virginia to do without?

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