Thank you, as you have already told them everything that I was going to tell them. However, you are correct in that many people would rather make thier own opinion based assumptions then actually do the research. Yes, the brattle group study is an excellent place for serious people to go who are concerned about coal and the effect this downturn is having on our area.http://www.brattle.com/_docume nts/UploadLibrary/Upload1082.p df
I you are really interested and not just here to bitch or talk politics, here is a good study on the subject. Much of the news is scary but they do lend us some hope that coal will eventually bounce back.
Other than that, there is a reason coal has been prefered over natural gas, and it's as always about money. The Obama administration is attempting to make gas preferable by having coal burning plants install very expensive retrofits to meet new EPA clean air standards. However, despite massive contributions from natural gas companies to enviromental groups ( they just jumped right in bed with them, isn't that nice to know those enviromentalists have our best interests at heart?), those enviromental groups are now turning on natural gas. So, they may be getting thier own barrage of harsh regulations real soon. Other than that, the price of gas is expected to steadily increase over the next 10 years, and with that increase, more and more plants will choose coal.
Best of luck to Kentucky Coal Miners
Don't let anyone tell you that Obama doesn't have a hand in this rigging of the market. As have hope just summarized nicely: several years ago, Chesapeake Energy gave the Seirra club about 26 million dollars to launch a campaign in Washington to put coal out of business. Seirra club did get caught with their pants down (and in bed with naty gas) during a hearing. Thats a big reason why they have turned on naty gas, to save face. Look it up people. With the added enviromental pressure in play and the sudden drop in price of natural gas, the coal companies were set up for a difficult time. See, utility companies can "switch" thier plants between coal or gas depending on what is cheaper at the time. When the utilities switched to naty gas, Obama seized the moment and began placing regulations via the epa on these plants, forcing them to purchase expensive fittings to switch back to coal. So, Obama made coal not worth spending the money for, and that is what weve been seeing in this area over the last couple years.
However, one must remember that there is a reason we havn't been using naty gas all along; with the exception of the past couple years, natural gas is an expensive energy. The price can only go up, while coal will stay the same. Yes, this means with no coal......your electric bill will go up a lot over the next decade. Obama, knowing that utilities will eventually buy thos retrofits, is seeking to place regulations on coal burning plants so heavy that they are currently unable to meet the with the available technology we have. If that isn't rigging the system then I don't know what is.
But, once again there is hope! Several plants that can actually burn coal cleaner then naty gas are popping up! So, once again, we have a fighting chance. Just remember folks, Washington is in bed with natural gas.....so yes, they are against us. When will you really see coal pick back up? In 2016 when we get the current administration out of Washington, hopefully.