Trump misguided in steps to save coal

President Trump has recently repealed the “Stream Protection Rule,” which was an act created by the Obama administration, and that prevented coal companies from dumping wastes into streams and rivers. His supporters have been praising him for repealing the act and bringing back coal mining jobs. Trump has also talked about “clean coal.” What do these things even mean? Let’s dig.

Coal companies obviously hated the Stream Protection Rule and they would claim that it would kill jobs, but Industrial Economics, Inc. did an analysis on the repeal of the act and found that it would hardly affect jobs at all. Repealing it would create 124 jobs. That’s it.

The number of jobs in the mining industry have been going down for decades and repealing this would do nothing to stop it. President Trump has been promising so many people jobs in mining, but those jobs aren’t there; they’re mostly done by robots and artificial intelligence.

“Clean coal,” President Trump says. On The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, he said, “Clean coal sounds like an oxymoron … so does President Trump.”

There is no such thing as clean coal. Nothing about it is good for the environment, and it’s polluting our earth as shown by 5.5 million people who die prematurely every year from the pollution that comes from power plants, factories and the burning of coal and wood, and in China, coal burning is the number one source of pollution. In China, coal alone is causing 360,000 deaths every year.

The Obama administration had made environmental rules that make it more expensive for coal plants to operate, so many utility companies switched to natural gas and renewables. Trump has promised to get rid of these rules, but he also talked about expanding fracking (which would actually hurt the coal industry.) Another oxymoron.

He also talks about repealing the Clean Power Plan, which made companies cut their CO2 emissions, but that wouldn’t make much of a difference to the production of coal. If he did do this, the Energy Information Association estimated that coal production would rise a little bit, but sink again.

Coal mining is an industry that will never thrive again. It’s dangerous and unethical. This industry will keep losing jobs to automation. Trump can make all of the promises he wants, coal is never coming back.

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