McKinley to keep fighting for coal-fired power plants

WHEELING — A Democratic plan seeks to eliminate all carbon emissions in America by 2040, and U.S. Rep. David B. McKinley doesn’t think that is feasible.

McKinley, R-W.Va., is working on a bill that would instead phase out carbon emissions to 20 percent by 2050. He is joined on this legislation by Rep. Kurt Schrader, D-Oregon.

The plan set forth by House Democrats in June seeks to eliminate all pollution from cars by 2035, from coal-fired power plants by no later than 2040, and to achieve net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.

“To get to zero percent, it takes a serious effort and time period to get to that,” McKinley said.

“Their plan isn’t enough. They want to take it (coal-fired emissions) to zero percent by (as soon as) 2035. This is only 15 years from now — we would go from where we are now to zero emissions.

“I know it is aspirational. It has some possibilities. But it is not realistic — not by 2035,” McKinley said.

The only way zero emissions could be achieved would be to shut down all coal-fired power plants, he said.

Natural gas power plants also emit carbon and could not be used under a zero emissions edict, McKinley noted.

Natural gas pipelines already have been blocked from coming through New England, and McKinley said that area now is forced to import its natural gas from Russia.

“We were trying to put Putin in a corner, and we turn around and buy our natural gas from Putin, Russia and L&G,” he said.

The U.S. also is buying some hydroelectric power from Canada, according to McKinley

“I just don’t know what is going to happen to West Virginia, Eastern Ohio and Pennsylvania when you can’t use coal for coal-fired power plants,” he said.


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