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The West Virginia Coal Forum was created in 1986 under the auspices of the Mine Safety & Technical Review Committee and at the direction of the West Virginia Legislative Committee on Coal Mining. This body was created to establish a forum for the coal industry to jointly resolve or develop technical and other issues impacting the industry, particularly those issues of an economic nature, or of major significance to the coal industry. The Forum also provides a means for management and labor leaders to develop joint legislative issues and programs and to promote the coal industry.

As fuel prices nationwide continue to hover at or above record prices, a series of bills designed to accelerate the domestic production and use of coal-to-liquid (CTL) fuels have recently been introduced in the House of Representatives as part of an effort to control energy costs and promote U.S. energy independence.  Rep. Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.) recently introduced the “Clean Coal-Derived Fuels for Energy Security Act” (H.R. 6170), which mandates the production of 6 billion gallons of CTL fuels by 2022. Rep. John Shimkus (R-Ill.) joined Capito as an original co-sponsor of the bill.  As fuel prices nationwide continue to hover at or above record prices, a series of bills designed to accelerate the domestic production and use of coal-to-liquid (CTL) fuels have recently been introduced in the House of Representatives as part of an effort to control energy costs and promote U.S. energy independence.  Rep. Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.) recently introduced the “Clean Coal-Derived Fuels for Energy Security Act” (H.R. 6170), which mandates the production of 6 billion gallons of CTL fuels by 2022. Rep. John Shimkus (R-Ill.) joined Capito as an original co-sponsor of the bill.  Fuel produced to meet the mandate would be used for aviation fuel, motor vehicle fuel, home heating oil and boiler fuel. The mandate begins in 2015 with a requirement that 750 million gallons of CTL fuel be produced, with that figure increasing annually until the 6 billion gallon target is reached.  “West Virginians are feeling it at the gas station and they’re feeling high gas prices in the spike in food costs,” said Capito in a May 27 statement. “It’s time for an all-hands-on deck policy and coal must play a part in our energy solutions,” she said. Capito stressed that America’s “coal reserves are larger than the combined oil reserves of the rest of the world,” saying “it’s time to get serious about coal-to-liquids.”  Capito emphasized that CTL fuels “can be clean, can be produced domestically, will create American jobs, are economically viable and is the right thing for West Virginia.”  Information on Rep. Capito’s bill is available at: Clean Coal-Derived Fuels for Energy Security Act. A copy  of the bill is available at: H.R. 6170.  More information on CTL fuels is available at: www.futurecoalfuels.org.

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