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White House Touts Energy Policies As Coal, Carbon Rules Loom

Reported: May. 29, 2014 4:06 PM EDT
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WASHINGTON (AP) -- The White House is setting the stage for upcoming restrictions on coal-fired power plants by casting its energy policy as an economic success that is creating jobs, securing the nation against international upheavals and shifting energy use to cleaner sources.

A 42-page White House report to be released Thursday argues that significant increases in domestic production of natural gas and reductions in oil consumption have better positioned the United States to advance its economic and environmental goals.

Few of the report's conclusions are new, but it includes a detailed analysis of how past reliance on petroleum imports made the U.S. economy especially susceptible to oil price shocks. White House economists say that has been diminished by a reduced U.S. demand for foreign oil.

The White House is set to announce a new proposed rule on Monday to set caps on carbon emissions from existing power plants.

U.S. Rep. Nick Rahall, D. W.Va., whose district covers West Virginia’s southern coalfields, issued a statement Thursday, taking issue with the proposed rule.

“On Monday the EPA is expected to unleash what is essentially a Federal cap-and-trade proposal aimed at our nation’s existing coal-fired power plants,” Rahall said in a statement. “I will oppose this rule as it will adversely affect coal miners and coal mining communities throughout West Virginia and the nation. At stake is our economy and the livelihoods of our coal miners, our steelworkers, electrical workers, those who keep our freight trains running, and families and businesses that rely on affordable energy from coal.”



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