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Engel Blasts Trump Administration's Plan to Bail Out Coal Plants on the Backs of American Consumers

Engel Blasts Trump Administration’s Plan to Bail Out Coal Plants on the Backs of American Consumers

Congressman Eliot Engel, a top member of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, joined Congressman Don Beyer and two dozen other House Democrats in writing Energy Secretary Rick Perry to express vigorous opposition to the Administration’s plan to bail out struggling coal plants on the backs of American consumers.

According to a draft memo from the Trump Administration, the Energy Department is making plans to exercise emergency authority under a pair of federal laws to direct the operators to purchase electricity or electric generation capacity from struggling coal and nuclear plants in an effort to extend their lives.

In their letter, the Members wrote the move was “irresponsible at best” and said it “sets a dangerous precedent of abusing these emergency authorities to bail out any pet project or pet energy source.”

“If implemented, the Administration’s plan would extend the lifespan of some of the oldest and dirtiest coal plants,” Engel said. “It would exponentially raise consumer electricity rates, pump large amounts of unnecessary carbon pollution into the environment, and likely stunt the growth of renewable sources of energy. This is another shortsighted maneuver by the President that will drain the pocketbooks of millions of ordinary Americans, harm the health of our children, and shortchange our nation’s future competitiveness – all to further enrich his friends in the fossil-fuel industry.”

Full text of the letter is available here.