The EPA is pushing for two new policies for the coal industry that will cost "hundreds of thousands of jobs ... and electric rates will skyrocket 11 percent to over 23 percent," reports Paul Bedard of U.S. News & World Report. The information is based on a new survey which uses government data.
The EPA told Bedard, however, that the health benefits are worth the pain. "[J]ust one of the rules to cut sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxide emissions will would yield up to $290 billion in annual health and welfare benefits in 2014. They say that amounts to preventing up to 36,000 premature deaths, 26,000 hospital and emergency room visits, and 240,000 cases of aggravated asthma," Bedard reports.
But the article also states that these could be the most expensive regulations "ever imposed on power plants."
According to statistics from the National Mining Association, the coal industry directly employs nearly 134,000 people, but, "For each coal mining job, an additional 3.5 jobs are created elsewhere in the economy." In Kentucky, the industry employs over 18,000 people alone.
With unemployment up again this month, the EPA certainly seems to be moving in the wrong direction.