Charleston, WV (November 5, 2015) – The West Virginia Coal Forum applauds West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey’s continued efforts to strike down the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) new source performance standards (NSPS). This rule effectively prohibits the construction of new, coal-fired power plants.
Chris Hamilton, co-chairman of the West Virginia Coal Forum, said, “With the loss of nearly 8,000 direct mining jobs in our state and region at the hands of the Federal government, General Morrissey is a true champion who continues to fight for the people of West Virginia. We are hopeful that his suit will lead to a reversal of the NSPS regulations.”
Tuesday’s petition, filed with the U.S. Court of Appeals in Washington, D.C., argues EPA exceeded its legal authority under Section 111(b) of the Clean Air Act in finalizing emissions standards that will jeopardize West Virginia’s energy needs as well as coal jobs here and across the country.
The lawsuit also challenges the legal underpinning of EPA’s Clean Power Plan, which Attorney General Morrisey and a team of states brought in federal court last month. The Clean Power Plan aims to drastically reduce or eliminate coal-based energy generation by reducing carbon dioxide emissions at existing power plants by an average of 32 percent by 2030.
“General Morrissey is a true friend of the coal miner,” Hamilton said. “His single-handed efforts to organize 23 states to challenge President Obama and his out-of-touch EPA are appreciated and we look forward to a positive outcome!”
Other states joining West Virginia in the lawsuit are Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Texas, Utah, Wisconsin and Wyoming. Other petitioners are the Arizona Corporation Commission, the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality and the North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality.