Great news! Those new EPA regulations which we’ve been trying to warn all of you voters about since the day Obama was elected are close to a reality. And when they go into effect there will be some really super terriffic things happening, at least according to a new study from Duke University, based on the employers in question.
New EPA regulations could force the closure of 65 percent of coal plants across the country, A Duke University study shows. That trend can already be seen in Indiana.
Duke Energy officials is planning to close four of its coal processing units at its Wabash River Facility in 2015. They are still deciding whether to transition a fifth unit to a natural gas processor.
Duke Energy Spokesman Lew Middleton says since 1990, Duke has spent about $2.8 billion to upgrade its Indiana facilities so they comply with EPA regulations.
“These units here at Wabash River—units two, three, four and five—are some of the oldest that we have in our system,” Middleton says. “When you do the economic analysis, it just does not make economic sense for us to install the pollution controls that would be necessary to meet the new EPA standards.”
There are some sobering numbers in there. A single employer in one state has spent enough to cover Barack Obama’s deficits for two years simply to catch up traditional technology with science which was unimagined when they constructed the plants and is still beyond the reach of most. Progress is being made, but apparently not on the government’s schedule.
So how is this “good news” you might wonder? Well, I suppose that depends who you ask.
Citizens Action Coalition Director Kerwin Olson says regardless of the reason, shutting down coal plants is a good thing.
“The environmentally friendly choice, the best choice for public health and the best choice for our economy is transitioning away from coal to renewable energy and energy efficiency,” he says. “There’s an enormous opportunity economically to develop those resources.”
This guy must be the inspiration for The Killers singing Mr. Brightside. There’s a silver lining for every cloud, even if it means that the thousands of people employed directly or indirectly by these companies and the communities they support have to go hit the unemployment lines. And the real bite in the backside is the vast amount of time, energy and money which has been spent in new technologies intended to bring them in line with rapidly evolving government expectations. Their investments are being rewarded with a big, wet slap in the face.
But hey… we’ll at least still have plenty of taxpayer money to keep the next solar energy and algae company in business, eh?