Coal

Kentucky Power Makes Case for Coal at Big Sandy Power Plant

by Erica Peterson April 30, 2012

The Kentucky Public Service Commission is set to decide soon whether American Electric Power can keep burning coal at an eastern Kentucky power plant. The Public Service Commissioners heard testimony today in Frankfort. Kentucky Power’s Big Sandy Power Plant in Lawrence County burns coal, and the company—which is owned by American Electric Power—is asking for […]

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Coal Lobby Has Grown Since Upper Big Branch Disaster

by Erica Peterson April 6, 2012

The amount of money coal industries poured into federal lobbying has increased since the fatal explosion at the Upper Big Branch Mine in West Virginia. The Center for Responsive Politics and Opensecrets.org analyzed the data and found in 2011, the coal industry spent $18.1 million on lobbyists. In 2009, that number was $14.9 million. As […]

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Mine Operators Continue to Give Advance Warning of Inspections, Despite Heightened Enforcement

by Erica Peterson April 2, 2012

As the two-year anniversary nears of the deadliest coal mine disaster in recent history, the Mine Safety and Health Administration is still trying to address some of the explosion’s root causes. One of the biggest impediments for federal inspectors is mine operators who break the law and give advance notice of inspections. When inspectors arrive […]

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New EPA Rules Will Limit Carbon Pollution for All Future Power Plants

by Erica Peterson March 27, 2012

The federal government has unveiled air quality standards that will affect new coal-fired power plants. The new EPA rules mark the first time carbon dioxide emissions from all new power plants will be limited. This doesn’t mean there won’t be any new coal-fired power plants built in the U.S., but it does mean that any […]

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Judge Rules EPA Overstepped its Authority When it Vetoed WV Surface Mine Permit

by Erica Peterson March 23, 2012

In a case that could have far-reaching implications, a federal judge has ruled that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency exceeded its authority in revoking permits for a strip mine in West Virginia. The EPA vetoed the permit for Arch Coal’s Spruce Mine more than a year ago, saying it would cause irreparable damage to the […]

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PSC Hears Testimony in LG&E Natural Gas Case

by Erica Peterson March 20, 2012

Kentucky’s Public Service Commissioners are considering a proposal by Louisville Gas and Electric to convert some of the company’s coal-fired facilities into natural gas plants. The PSC held a formal hearing on the issue today. LG&E already has permission to retire three of its coal-fired power plants, including the Cane Run plant in southwest Louisville. […]

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New Surface Coal Mining Permits Effective Today

by Erica Peterson March 19, 2012

A new permit that will change the way the federal government deals with some surface coal mining permits goes into effect today. The new permit issued by the Army Corps of Engineers has more stringent standards to protect the environment. When coal operators want a permit for a surface mine, they have two choices. They […]

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PSC Will Hold Formal Hearing Tuesday on LG&E Gas Conversion Plan

by Erica Peterson March 19, 2012

The Public Service Commission will hear testimony for and against a proposed project at Louisville Gas and Electric’s Cane Run power plant tomorrow. The utility company is asking for permission to retire several coal-fired power plants, including the Cane Run Power Station in southwest Louisville. It plans to replace the generation capacity with both new […]

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Environmental Groups Say Burning Coal at Big Sandy Isn’t Least-Cost Option

by Erica Peterson March 14, 2012

Two environmental groups are contesting an application filed with the Public Service Commission by an eastern Kentucky power company. They say retrofitting the Big Sandy power plant to continue burning coal will be more expensive than the company reported. In December, Kentucky Power filed an application with the Public Service Commission to spend $940 million […]

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Report Urges Policymakers to Consider Long-Term Sustainability of Coal Severance Fund

by Erica Peterson March 14, 2012

State lawmakers are considering a bill that would designate some coal severance tax money to scholarships for coalfields residents; the measure has already passed the House. But a report by a non-profit group warns that Kentucky needs to think about the long-term future of the state’s coal severance fund. Coal producers pay a tax of […]

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