Coal Age

SEP 2018

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May 2016 2 editor's note Clean, Affordable Energy from Coal T his month, the Coal in the News section opens with a report on the new Affordable Clean Energy (ACE) rule. During Au- gust, Andrew Wheeler, the acting administrator of the Environ- mental Protection Agency (EPA), signed the proposal, which would remove environmental restrictions on power plants and return much of the industry regulation to the states. Ultimate- ly, the administration needs to repeal the Clean Power Plan (CPP) to balance the playing field for electricity markets, which will help keep pricing competitive. The ACE rule, however, is an important step in the right direction and Wheeler should be applauded for restoring the EPA to its traditional role of pro- tecting the environment from actual threats. One could easily make the argument that the CPP was never about clean power. America's fleet of coal-fired power plants is the cleanest in the world and getting cleaner. Collectively, they have reduced pollution by nearly 70% since 1970. The real purpose of the CPP was to shift the economy away from cheap, reliable energy and toward renewable energy. This fit the Obama adminis- tration's climate change narrative. Using the CPP, which was not based on credible science, the EPA wrongly interpreted its powers under the Clean Air Act and act- ed recklessly to disrupt power markets. Few renewable power projects could stand alone without subsidies. The disruption tilted the scales in favor of natural gas and the U.S. is blessed with inexpensive natural gas. With all these favorable changes in policies toward coal, no new coal-fired pow- er plants have been announced yet in the U.S. The situation, however, is different in other parts of the world. In this month's World News section, Coal Age reports a new coal-fired power plant commissioned in Panama and another under construction in Vietnam. Japanese and Korean firms have announced several new coal-fired power projects throughout Asia. As this edition was going to press, Clive Palmer, an Austra- lian mining magnate, had announced plans for a $1.5 billion coal-fired power plant in Australia. What do these places have in common? They don't have natural gas and they need affordable, clean power. In early September, Japan's northern island of Hokkaido suffered a magnitude 6.6 earthquake. The epicenter for the quake was the island's only source of energy, a coal-fired power plant. The plant will be repaired and power will be restored. Imag- ine how the conversation would have gone if it were a nuclear plant similar to the one in Fukushima in 2011. Today, Japan is talking about building more coal-fired power plants. In the Powder River Basin Roundup this month (See p. 16), Cloud Peak Energy discusses its plans to export more coal to Japan. The world's appetite for coal will only grow and miners will satisfy that energy hunger. American coal operators are getting a taste of that action, but they are con- strained by export facilities. The U.S. needs to ramp up export capacity to capture this growing market. Russian coal operators are already competing with those in Australia and Indonesia to supply China and its neighbors. These regions are not forging ahead with massive plans for renewable energy. Why? It's unable to meet their needs because renewable energy is not scalable and it's costly. Coal Age, Volume 123, Issue 7, (ISSN 1040-7820) is published monthly ex- cept January and July, by Mining Media International, Inc., 11655 Central Parkway, Suite 306, Jacksonville, Florida 32224 ( Pe- riodicals postage paid at Jacksonville, FL, and additional mailing offices. Canada Post Publications Mail Agreement No. 41450540. Canada return address: PO Box 2600, Mississauga ON L4T 0A8, Email: subscriptions@ Current and back issues and additional resources, including subscription request forms and an editorial calendar, are available online at SUBSCRIPTION RATES: Free and controlled circulation to qualified subscribers. Visit to subscribe. Non-qualified persons may subscribe at the following rates: U.S. domestic addresses, 10-issue subscription, US$75. All addresses outside the USA for a 10-issue subscription, US$125. For subscriber services or to order single copies, contact Coal Age, c/o Stamats Data Manage- ment, 615 Fifth Street SE, Cedar Rapids IA 52401, 1-800-553-8878 ext. 5028 or email ARCHIVES AND MICROFORM: This magazine is available for research and retrieval of selected archived articles from Proquest. For microform avail- ability, contact ProQuest at 800-521-0600 or +1.734.761.4700, or search the Serials in Microform listings at POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Coal Age, 11655 Central Parkway, Suite 306, Jacksonville, FL 32224-2659. REPRINTS: Mining Media International, Inc., 11655 Central Parkway, Suite 306, Jacksonville, FL 32224 USA; phone: +1.904.721.2925, fax: +1.904.721.2930, PHOTOCOPIES: Authorization to photocopy articles for internal corporate, personal, or instructional use may be obtained from the Copyright Clear- ance Center (CCC) at +1.978.750.8400. Obtain further information at COPYRIGHT 2018: Coal Age, incorporating Coal and Coal Mining & Processing. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Steve Fiscor, Publisher & Editor-in-Chief Mining Media International, Inc. 11655 Central Parkway, Suite 306 Jacksonville, Florida 32224 U.S.A. Phone: +1.904.721.2925 Fax: +1.904.721.2930 Editorial Publisher & Editor-in-Chief—Steve Fiscor, Associate Editor—Jennifer Jensen, Technical Writer—Jesse Morton, Contributing Editor—Russ Carter, Latin American Editor—Oscar Martinez, Graphic Designer—Tad Seabrook, Sales Midwest/Eastern U.S. & Canada, Sales—Victor Matteucci, Western U.S., Canada & Australia—Frank Strazzulla, Scandinavia, UK and European Sales—Colm Barry, Germany, Austria & Switzerland Sales—Gerd Strasmann, Japan Sales—Masao Ishiguro, Production Manager—Dan Fitts, BY STEVE FISCOR PUBLISHER & EDITOR-IN-CHIEF

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