Science

Trump Orders 'Immediate Steps' to Boost Coal Plants

Trump Orders 'Immediate Steps' to Boost Coal Plants

Adm. Paul F. Zukunft will be relieved by Adm. Karl L. Schultz as the Commandant of the U.S. Coast Guard.

In what could be an important lifeline for Colstrip and its coal-fired power plants, President Donald Trump ordered Energy Secretary Rick Perry Friday to "take immediate steps" to prevent the future closures of coal and nuclear power plants around the nation.

"Unfortunately, impending retirements of fuel-secure power facilities are leading to a rapid depletion of a critical part of our nation's energy mix, and impacting the resilience of our power grid", Sanders said.

The Trump administration could invoke two seldom-used laws to save faltering coal and nuclear plants, according to a Bloomberg News report.

Likewise, on behalf of the Solar Energy Industries Association, Christopher Mansour, the group's vice president for federal affairs, says, "A policy to spend billions of dollars keeping uneconomic power plants afloat - while trying to put clean and affordable solar on the sidelines - is not a recipe for economic success".

The drilling industry, renewable energy companies, and many grid operators reject the idea that coal and nuclear power plant closures are undermining USA electricity reliability and resiliency, saying gas, solar and wind have proven dependable.

The idea comes after federal energy regulators rejected a proposal late a year ago from Energy Secretary Rick Perry to subsidize nuclear and coal plants for providing "resilience" to the grid.

Amazon US Website Blocked In Australia
Meanwhile, Treasurer Scott Morrison said the government didn't need to apologise for pushing ahead with the online GST changes. As a result of changes to Australian GST law on 1 July, worldwide shopping options for Australian customers will change.

Essentially, that would force grid operators to buy coal or nuclear power even if other options like natural gas or renewable sources are cheaper. "Any federal intervention in the market to order customers to buy electricity from specific power plants would be damaging to the markets and therefore costly to consumers".

As reported earlier by Mining Weekly Online, according to data sourced from the Central Electricity Authority (CEA), on April 22, thermal power plants with aggregating generation capacity of 140 065 MW had coal stocks of 15.01-million tons, equivalent to about nine days' consumption, against a normative stock requirement of 22 days set by CEA.

But Robert Murray, chairman and CEO of Murray Energy Corp., the nation's largest privately owned coal company, hailed the White House announcement.

The Trump administration confirmed Friday that it was looking into taking drastic actions to save the sputtering industry.

"We support all efforts to ensure the security of our nation's electric power supply, which is critical to the reliability of our electric power grids, to low-priced electricity and to our national defense", Murray said Friday in a statement. "This needlessly raises costs for consumers and merely shifts the risk of premature retirement to newer, more efficient power plants that compete with coal and nuclear".

The White House-sponsored DoE memo reportedly states that "too many of these fuel-secure plants have retired prematurely and many more have recently announced retirement", while declaring that the replacement of coal and nuclear plants by natural gas and renewable power in the U.S. is not secure.

Among those arguing for federal action is Jeff Miller, a well-connected GOP fundraiser who has served as an adviser to Perry and other Republicans and ran Perry's unsuccessful presidential campaign in 2016.


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