EPA moves to undo tougher pollution limits on coal plants

Pruitt did not mention climate change or carbon dioxide in his remarks before Consol employees in Sycamore, Pa., on Thursday.

UWAG said EPA underestimated the rule's costs and withheld records about the rulemaking from utilities who would have to comply with the rule, which the agency estimates could cost up to $2.5 billion a year.

The EPA regulations on chemical plants came to fruition following an Obama-era executive order signed in 2013 to revisit those regulations following the West Texas accident.

"The coal industry was almost devastated by years of regulatory overreach, but with new direction from President Trump, we are helping to turn things around for these miners and for many other hard working Americans", Pruitt said. "We can achieve both and we will".

Pruitt spoke to about 100 miners at the Harvey Mine, one of three mines comprising the Bailey mine complex run by CNX Coal Resources about 50 miles south of Pittsburgh.

He said they have weathered stricter regulations in recent years that have been burdensome.

"We see that this rule as an important rule to have on the books", Kothari said. "There's always going to be a need for coal in the generation mix". Trump's decision to attack our right to clean water on behalf of coal executives is just another indication of who this Administration works for - and it isn't American families, but polluters.

"It's very encouraging", Haines said.

Meanwhile, under Trump, there is a new "competitiveness", and the "false choice between jobs and growth, and the environment, we have rejected that", Pruitt continued.

Penn Future's Larry Schweiger said a rollback of restrictions will have no effect since coal is quickly being replaced by cheap and bountiful natural gas. The rule was estimated to affect only 12 percent of steam electric power plants. Amy Graham, the EPA's deputy associate administrator for public engagement, said the visit was to describe to the miners the next steps for the agency. It's the latest move by the Trump administration to ease the regulatory burden on the coal industry.

Job growth is not in coal, but in renewable energy.

After all, the administration, through its EPA task force, says it wants "input" from NGOs, tribal governments, consumers, small businesses and local governments. OEFT manages EPA's environmental crimes investigators.

Since his nomination in December, Pruitt has faced unprecedented opposition for someone seeking the role of the national environmental caretaker.

Scott Pruitt, President Trump's Environmental Protection Agency administrator, has voiced support for the White House's proposal to radically cut the agency's budget. The Trump administration is asking for 10 additional agents to help safeguard Pruitt.

Pruitt's staff is reportedly on high alert, and "anticipate that Mr. Pruitt will initially request a 24/7 detail", E&E News reports.

Sharon Pillar, a consultant for Environmental Entrepreneurs, noted that clean energy jobs far outstrip mining jobs, with 3 million nationally and 70,000 in Pennsylvania.

Over the span of almost a decade, the Consol Energy mine in Harvey, Pennsylvania dumped millions of pounds of pollution into local waterways, for which EPA recently assessed the company a $3 million penalty.

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