The Post-Gazette’s June 4 editorial regarding the Obama administration’s carbon emission standards (“Breathing Easier: Obama Takes a Historic Step on Climate Change”) noted that the plan has been faulted for not going far enough.
The reason it doesn’t is because it can’t, seeing that U.S. power plants constitute only 4 percent of the global greenhouse gas emissions in the first place, according to the Energy Information Administration, the independent data collection and analysis arm of the U.S. Department of Energy.
China and India, on the other hand, account for 20 percent of the global total. They and other developing countries are increasing their reliance on coal, while the Obama administration proposes to engage in unilateral economic disarmament and hand everyone else a competitive edge.
The coal industry, which contributes significantly to the Western Pennsylvania economy, does not argue against emission reductions. Rather, it’s a matter of how it is done, so we can preserve tens of thousands of family-sustaining jobs instead of sending them overseas.
To reiterate a point that we make regularly, this country doesn’t need to choose between the economy and the environment. We can have both with a common-sense approach to these issues.
Pennsylvania Coal Alliance