Energy

Trump’s Plan To Revive The Coal Industry Could Help A Big Supporter

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Tim Pearce Energy Reporter
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Mining company CEO Robert Murray could benefit should President Donald Trump’s plan to energize the coal and nuclear industry to pass the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), Bloomberg reports.

Energy Secretary Rick Perry sent a letter to the FERC in September, highlighting the importance of baseload energy sources like coal, nuclear and natural gas. After Hurricanes Harvey and Irma, Perry asked FERC regulators “to ensure that certain reliability and resilience attributes of electric generation resources are fully valued.”

Perry’s proposal would reward coal and nuclear power plants for stockpiling fuel that could be used during a disaster when fuel lines and routes are shut down. In return, the generators would charge customers a premium for electricity.

Pennsylvania’s largest coal-fired power plant, Bruce Mansfield generating plant in Shippingport, may shut down if Perry’s proposal is not adopted, according to Bloomberg.

Murray, CEO of Murray Energy Corp., is a main supplier to Bruce Mansfield’s parent company, FirstEnergy Corp. Murray has been an adamant supporter of Trump and Energy Secretary Rick Perry’s plan to revive the coal industry, Politico reports.

The premium price for coal energy under Perry’s plan may be enough to save the plant that is running at 36 percent of its mass capacity.

“As stated, disastrous consequences for President Trump, our electric power grid reliability, and tens of thousands of coal miners will result if this is not immediately done,” Murray said in a letter on Perry’s proposal, according to the Houston Chronicle.

Perry’s plan has been criticized as a bailout for a struggling industry.

“If you want to tax customers to do favors for friends, be honest about it,” former FERC appointee Nora Mead Brownell said.

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