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tv   Washington Journal Spotlight on the Coal Industry  CSPAN  May 12, 2017 7:59pm-10:31pm EDT

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acts, one concern can assist with some consider to be the uncaring world. >> starting at the bottom is not humiliation but humility the assessment of where you are in the learning curve to shelve your ego and put your head down to bulldog for word to. >> the agenda peace and protection and the environment and pride. >> just a few features from the video library watch commencement speeches by politicians and business leaders and white house officials. >> we're joined here in the
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capitol hill studio by the deputy editor of the provincial energy news from the coal industry is in the united states what are the main types of coal mined in the united states?. >> you to go from black to brown song that is mined in eastern pennsylvania is the not as much now. and then that type that is used for power plants than the type that is more brown and has less ability to produce energy but it is used in north dakota lot so that ranges to their different based and what part of the country. >> you talk about their ranges of coal talk about the mines.
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>> a lot of people assume all coal mines are power plants. but there are a lot of minds and there is the big marketlants for our metallurgical coal you estimate coal and steel and iron. a lot of the exports of overseas are for that metallurgical coal. it is and the power plant regulations but how much countries are developing and how much steel bidi to build >> there is speculation is our today our guest this morning should note that as we talk about the subject we have special phone lines would to hear your comments or if a.m. -- remembers manuel
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quinones we talk about the coals and the mine talk about the power plant itself where will you find coal power plants in the united states?. >> they're all over the country but there is a lot where the coal is to have anal-fired power plants indiana, ohio and relying on the coal-fired power western states southern states so that runs the gamut that if you look at the ohio valley that historically has been called heavy because it is easy to transport with rivers and real but to beos distributed around the country but a lot of states have tried to move away from coal because of the market conditions and regulations a
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lot of power plants have been shifting away and so they have shrunk.r >> so now we're showing the u.s. energy information with the bottom different maps and charts. but the cost of coal and how it is used a different power plants?. >> the biggest selling point is that coal is cheap in nonvolatile in price.if would have to look at a chart over time surprisingly little volatility than not only the price of the coal itself but what it takes the cost to produce energy out of that coal.storic and that has been lower than
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other fuel sources of natural gas prices have come down dramatically because of the shale discoveries in pennsylvania and elsewhere so now it is cheaper to burn gas and coal. the coal industry will tell you over time gas prices have been more volatile file but in recent years they have been cheap and we have such an abundance of gas but then there is regulation gas is cheaper with more regulation on coal. >> this chart from the u.s. energy information shows the annual share of electricity generation the black line at the top is cool with its share as a percentage of u.s. electricity generation in the '50s it was over 50 percent and then started to go down in the '90s and
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now we see the orange line is the line for natural gas starting to pick up at the same time. so they are a competitor to call?. >> definitely now when gasue surpassed coal that was ail big milestone. at first it started to surpass slightly ben cole was dominant but the trend -- is for more renewals and forecast it is for gas andd coal to retail large chunks of the market as it will u take more of the marketplace and we will see that. >> he mentioned the regulatory regime is coal more heavily regulated than others?. >> that is an interesting
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question. the obama administration moved to increase regulations on coal and we're talking from lines to power plants and in some ways develop regulations that encourage more natural gas used because the trump t administration is trying to reverse that to encourage them to use power plants to use gas where before it made it more difficult for them to use coal. but natural gas is heavily regulated because when youd burn it when coal is more polluting then it is more stringent. >> covering the coal industry for how many years now?. >> six years. >> check out his work and
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here to answer your questions as to start this discussion today on the coal industry may want to hear your stories we will start in new york city. >> caller: good morning. thank you for dedicating some time to this issue of natural resources and our energy.i have i have a comment and question. listening to government empire jersey sinn how coal is used, the president rolls back the obama regulations regulations, it seems like we're trying to bring back course san buggey technology with the auto industry but i don't understand why it is
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such a dated technology is something that is debated and we don't put enough emphasis on more technologically advanced energy sources. so my question is is the industry in that much of a power role of the american energy field where they are retarding development for business? i heard you say call is relatively inexpensive but is the industry really holding back development so much on the profits that they ignore technology?. >> guest: it is an interesting question because to the first part a lot of
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people in the coal industry will say it is the conception of technologyvery because until very recently when we saw the numbers go down it wasn't dominant then when we had the energy shock the u.s. government promoted the use of coal because they thought it was so abundant but especially since passing those environmental rules there has been a lot of technological audiences in how the coal is burned with more efficient power plantsamout and that shows the same amount of electricity at the same time the industry has been very active to lobby against environmental regulations they tend not to be very friendly to government subsidies but at the same time they're fighting for the government
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to focus on these developing technologies to trap greenhouse gas emissions in the industry will tell you if you let the market decide then win or lose based on the market what they don't want is the government to tip the scales when there is a potential for technology. >> talk about clean coal technology what part of that process?. >> it is a myriad of technologies.yriad power plants that are dramatically more efficientgas o to turn coal into gas. but in washington policy circles basically you're talking about carbon catcher
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-- captures sequestrationla they burn it that the power plant trap the curb emissions and store them underground or use them to enhance old oil wells are used fertilizer that is something the obamaso administration and the trump administration is working but it is extremely expensive and especially you have utilities for what you invest more in theseor t technologies? they say it cost this amount why should i?. >>. >> good morning. i am loving the show right now so trump said he
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promised to bring back the coal miner jobs that we have the opportunity can they force us. >> even during the campaign would say he libbing that colt even the most ardent kohl's supporters said you shouldn't make such promises because most independent analyst will tell you things will not go back to the way they used to be. right now a lot of coal mining companies are reporting a surge people areha coming in but a lot of that
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was expected because we had a strong bottom. but in reality the trouble administration has moved to roll back regulations so wery could see some effect but when it comes to big job gains even they will live mitt they cannot return to where they used to be used to have tens of thousands ofof jobs. maybe we will get more but not to where it used to me. >> host: has the trumpmpabout wh administration say when there is a bump? if you talk about those regulations ? if people see that bob?. >> not really.on they move to the clean power plant with greenhouse gases
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that the same time that rule was stayed by the courts and not effect some coal miners said that was destiny but it never had a chance to go into effect with congress and president trump rescinded it so that increased safety regulations those have gone into effect for years but you can tell how much they will make a difference either withdrawal and investment it to make a difference but actually on the ground it removed that. >> with the information that came out last friday the first quarter of 201,772,600ow jobs down in the first
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quarter of 2016 from 78,900 jobs in the united states. we will talk about those and the people in industry space to hear from the coal miners and their families. maryland good morning. >> caller: i would like to make three comments. the first is the one thing that i realize they don't actually don't live in the area that control the power plants so all the waste that goes into the water that is my first comment i don't care so much that coal is cheap but the members of congress just passed a billill,$ that has $3 billion for the care of coal miners.
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i am sure the government will not take care of my medical needs with the coal companies and not take the lead on carrying for this pretty dangerous job. will last comment is i have mentioned this before but sometimes to counter this information to fact check it is easy people to get on the phone to the effects of the environment and pollutionmist ad but nobody talks about these-- things. >> stick around we will have a lot of different gaston this topic including a ceo who lives in the area at
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8:00 the local congressmen from eastern ohio and bill johnson will join us and also the vice director from the ohio valley commission will join us then six generation coal miner will be with us live that isns happening at 930 this morning live you may be interested to see those guest but talking about the miners' health care bill?. >> that is a good wind up. first i want to address what you brought up with those environmentalist's point even the ceos who lived in the area sometimes and they come to capitol hill they say that this has been tainted it doesn't seem to
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make the big difference in the political discussion. and those for recreation it doesn't seem to make that much of a difference. but it is fairly complicated basically united mine workers of america have a health care plant and they were in peril. with pro union lawmakers to have congress step bin - - in for the benefit plan. because they had to ring pension and health care was too much and republicans were skeptical of doing both.pporte supporters will tell you there is a promise made to nicole miners and the unions for the government to back out that goes back to truman
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and with negotiations.ce the f and since then the federal government has stepped in to backstop those benefits during amendments a couple decades ago to extend a program and then they made a formula with a cut of the interest dollars and ended up not being done with theno downturn of the market so then congress had to step in again the there has been a big discussion of congress should have done this but did the and miners persisted and this has gone on for years but only recently did they get their health benefits.
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>> we have just a couple minutes left with manuel quinones then we will go to tallahassee point ohio for several interviews with topics of the coal industry- is a trans loading facility a transfer point from the mine in ohio to the poweroh plant up and down the ohio river where the call comes in in addition to those power plants one of those individuals is the harborid manager we went to show viewers an interview we did recently in which he describes what actually happened each day at thens facility there spinnaker have a trans loading facility that goes by train down to the harbor by trains it is loaded on to the
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barges what we have realized years ago is barge transportation is the most efficient way the matter what product it is and i can put it into perspective. we lota barge here in about 40 minutes that is 1700 tons of coal. when they leave the harbor there is usually 15 that are tied together and then to go further into perspective it would take 150 coal trucksndred to come up with that much gold to deliver at one timeus that we can do that with three barges in one boat. >> how many spots to they cover up and down the ohio
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river?. >> varies sometimes as many as 60 or 70 barges per loade. and the harbor at a time but the furthest power plant is probably inside of 400 miles from here which will take the kultur three days to get there by water but still it is quicker than if you try to use the roads. >> how much coal comes to this point on a daily basis? >> between 25 and 30 tons of coal will come through here on a daily basis. >> host: how many people does it take to move that?. >> very minimal. we have an operator we usem on our pile and we have a crew like ted deckhand and
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the 4 million - - 4 million and also the operator and maintenance people so it doesn't take a lot of people to do what we do for the amount of coal that we ship. >> host: that is where we will be for most of the restro of the day's program but we will have water to more calls with manuel quinones he is here with us at the desk in washington d.c.. >> good morning. we were a coal mining family over 30 years and my husbandintn was the superintendent andthe he was devoted to the people of the area of southeastern
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ohio just like a doctor if it went down for two hours day or night he got up and went back out. i was the mother of two children almost like a widow because he was so devoted one time i said why do you do that? he said there are so many families in the industry that when i leave my family to get it back up to stay in production i am an advocate for hundreds of families in this area. now that coal mine is shut down.ent ba i went up a few months ago to that area is poverty and welfare. when people say the industry
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don't ever want them to forget these people try to put their kids through college which we did with two children, tried to have the life to flip on a switch a i in oregon or california is alive and advocate because there are families it is in the industry. >> banks for the call. >> first i want to expound that is the machine underground that basically pushes against the wall of the scene to shear the callt off and puts it on the conveyor belt bin ships about it is very impressive. but to the broader point people talk about how in
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recent years they have fallen of abundance in theun grand scheme of things but no even coal producers say it is just a fraction of them so why do we worry so much about them? but what she colored for us is it is in people's blood, it is their culture and heritage and has a long history so it is hard for people to say let's move on. that has provided a good living they make pretty good money from places away from the big metro >> host: deputy editor manuel quinones we appreciate your time. we have been showing you images from the trans loading center of the ohio river just across the river
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you can see the power plants on by american electric power as well we have a senior vice president ofse commercial operations which owns those plants that joins us now. good morning. >> good morning. >> how many power plants do you operate and how many customers does it provide electricity?. >> we serve 5.4 million customers across our area as number of plants is a little more difficult to nail down with the technology changedno now that we invest with wind turbine and solar but we have passed the capacity of gigawatt hours
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potentially 175 units. >> host: how many of thoseho are coal-fired?. >> about 47% of the generated capacity is cold. >> we see camera station in mitchell's power plant?. >> yes that is the one you see nothing coming out the other ec water vapor with the modern technology that we install on the plant. >> why is there nothing comes out?. >> relate what you see across the river is the transition that has occurrede ce this was a group of plants that we shut down in 2015
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they were over 50 years old and due to environmental regulation that came down the pike we could not justify to afford though wet scrubbers on the plants. >> what will happen to tha' facility?. >> it will be dismantled and r hopefully be purchased to bring a industrial customer to a the area. >> senior vice president is joining us you can see some of the plants we're talking about. can you explain how coal power plants works for the viewers? ♪ --. >> guest: leer on the ohio river many of the plants like the mitchell plan and
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receives:i conveyor belt by a neighboring coal maya lin negative:as well as barge and rail. so we bring that cold into the plant and store it and there are several days ofar inventory in the front yard so we grind that to fine powder and transfer that heaped to steam or high-pressure steam with the steam turbines to drive the generators then we send it through to remove thee nitrous oxide then it goes through the wet scrubber that causes the water vaporin t and we inject limestone that
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reacts with the sulfur dioxide to foreign ships some - - gypsum that is a chalky substance people know that is the chalky substance of the walls of the house the ship that across the street to the plant thenos that goes across theon construction industry. >> host: as you look at that over your shoulder how many people work at the michel station today?. >> approximately to 020 permanent workers then during the year for maintenance and other activities we employ a as many as three or 400 construction workers.
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>> commercial vice president of commercial operations check them out bomb might be appreciate you stopping by on line. >> host: now take their viewers down to very energy headquarters not too far away with their joined by the company founder and ceo robert murray takes for joining us. >> we read your transfer center how many mines does murray energy operate and how many employees?. >> we have 17 mines we had a 400 employees but because of the rock obama and democrats we got down at 5,000 now we're back up to about 6500
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employees and president thomas done a wonderful job so far for low-cost electricity for the coal miners we hope to get back to where we were eventually. >> what kind of mines does energy - - free energy operate?. >> minor all underground environmentally that is the most acceptable way people don't even know we're downkn there at 1,000 feet but murray energy corporation is exclusively underground mining in the united states. we do some surface mining and columbia south america and but we're underground as that is the most environmentally acceptable
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way to do that. the public don't even know i have thousands of employees right under them. >> host: when did you start to the business? said he never worked in the underground mine?. >> i worked 16 years under ground every day.until i was underground every week until last july and though i contract to the problemclai problem, headquarters are here just 15 miles from where you were in the coalfield. they just want to honor -- work with honor and dignity under obama families were destroyed and lost theirst jobs for every job we have in the minds there up to 11 jobs in the community school teachers, a county state employees' doctors and
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lawyers that spinoff from every coal mining jobs and that is from university studies of we're proud of the fact that i had a 400 employees for 100,000 jobs in the united states that is why six years ago i'd love my headquarters back to be among the people they just want to work in honor and dignity i had the call minor that i had hired three years ago was forced to lay him off like a not get him out of my office that is the obama clinton democrats that is a problem they never solved these are wonderful people and just want to work with honor and dignity. >> host: talk about yourea
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relationship with the president. >> i have a very close relationship with president trump he has some wonderfulon things for the coal industr've t in the last three months we have been very engaged to identify the regulations of the obama administration the need to be eliminated and hoping to get the right people that the obama and democrats had for eight years but those who really understand the coal industryaino and our customers said uncertainty over eight years because of these mixed signals from ill legal regulations from the obama administration because reliable low-cost electricity is $0.4 per
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kilowatt hour. the electricity from solar panel mentioned earlier is $0.26 but they give $0.4 from the taxpayer as a subsidy that would not even exist otherwise. natural-gas historically has been $0.15 per kilowatt hour so call is one-fourth of natural or was seventh from the winterbourne we need to keep that mixed so people have reliable low-cost images city we have an energy party problem and we're about the woman trying to raise children on one income they pay out 22% of what they make for energyobal that manufacture of the
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product also pays out 22%. we have to worry about the cost of electricity and the reliability of it. it is the stability of life. >> host: taking calls and questions on the special wine at (202) 748-8000. otherwise we split up our lives by time zones. eastern is (202) 748-8001. mountain pacific regions is (202) 748-8002. >> host: you mentioned 63,000 jobs lost during thera obama administration so with those numbers in the bureau of labor statistics 72,600 jobs in the coal industry right now can you expect those 63,000 to come back?. >> john, president trogon
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the ill-fated clean power plant has already saved 25,000 coal mining jobs but we lost 63,000 times 11 thats is about 40,000 jobs undernd the democrat obama the last eight years. killing of the clean power plant what mr. trump saved closing of 56,004 on top of 411 more than obama closed. >> host: when you say illegally?. >> that saved 25,000 coal mining jobs we would have gone down plus anotherlready 25,000 recalculated he has already saved 25,000 people bring the economy back to
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the united states. because coal-fired electricity is one sixth of the cost and one-fourth of the cost of electricity from c natural gas. >> what specific regulations ? a clean power plant?. >> yes. that is 25,000 jobs the k first regulation was the screen projection it would stop mining and in the dry ditch in the surface simply that was an attempt to eliminate underground mining with no benefit at all that the clean power plant and then they cannot to study the resiliency of the power grid because it has left a
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very unreliable power grid and all the experts are saying that the cold need to be there the only solid hydrocarbon so to keep the real liability we need 30 percent coal-fired electricity and that is where we are at right now and the margins are very thin was closing the plants the scrubbers were ordereders we but they passed regulations it was called a limitationff deadline with a water discharge from the scrubber but that has been killed now mr. trump is in the process to do solid discharge sirree have addressed 67 items down
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the list with the greatest destroyer america ever hadc brought obama and his democratic friends. >> host: you can talk to some of the callers. >> caller: good morningic there was an article last month talking about nicole free nation and an article from the "washington post"they r showing how natural gas usage and all those are coming up that the industry is changed but we have to
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change as a nation climate changes real talking about the kilowatt hours what about nuclear?. >> he is less informed much of what he stated. number one we need reliability of electric power. went is only available if the blows solar power is only available if the sun shines. if you eliminate coal power only lasted years then what you will do you? he is wrong to say it cannot replace cold they are about a even about 32% of electricity generation. call was 52% before the
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election of barack obama. the earth has cooled the 2 last 20 years the antarctic i.c.e. shield is larger than it has ever been in recorded history from 1979.s larger you could close down every coal-fired plant in the united states to have been a measurable effect on global climate temperatures thanes they quantified 0.'02 degrees so listeners' comments are virtually all misguided and not correct.: >> host: south carolina go-ahead. >> caller:. >> and but you were on theyvision telling the truth his comments are misguided because they listen to propaganda they destroy everything they can get their hands on to the first h
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part of the show the comments from maxine waterssa and then they destroyedd other areas of the country we have to straighten out your industry to tell the american people the truth and that is rarely have to start. >> host: indiana good morning. [applause] good morning i have a question. he were very concerned about your people you say you takeup your upgrade and put back into our pockets but that 16 percent the worst winter we had 16 percent is a lotra to raise a person's electricity in the middle of winter. you say you are so prone
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industry then how come the epa that you know that this is a bad business? and it took them to do something?. >> guest: her comments are so misguided i don't know how to reply. oil industry is very environmentally conscious. i have children andd grandchildren just like shee does in my a concern about the environment that is why underground mine coal can berndt as cleanly but we need to make a commitment to the high energy will he mission and technology with the emissions from coal-fired generations
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actually are lower than natural gas. we cannot rely on the wind mill i don't run any power plants he will have to ask somebody else the question about your electric bill butg ye our goal is holding your electric bill down 1/6 of the cost for windmills and solar panels and there are no other ways to produce electricity other than with nuclear power plants and a coal-fired plants that we need in the energy mix. >> host: connecticut good >> caller: i feel like i have a lot to say there has been other industries that have had to go away because they were not sustainable
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environmentally. like wailing. i am sure people were just as attached to those jobs or old-growth forest but as we learn the effect of these we move on to more sustainable things and i have watched a lot of documentary's and i have read zero what and what i am hearing there is no such thing as a cold now maybe you can burn it more effected flee but just to get back to the ground to shut now that trump has rolled back they cannot put
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that back into the streams and rivers is very upsetting and also the same documentary's how the price of wind and solar is coming down drastically in some cases it is less expensive than coal. >> host: there is a lot bear. >> guest: again she has been reading the wrong material over and will and the solar power as $0.26 a gets a $0.4 subsidy from her taxes coal is $0.4 which is 16 of the cost of electricity from natural gas is four times more expensive and will only last 10 years.
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so this technology must sustain coal with the reliability with a power grid that is a staple of life today. >> talking about clean coal what could washington do to help with that?. >> first of all carbon captured in sequestration as a technology does not work it is not practical or economic curve dioxide is act gas and was never covered under the clean air act. so we need to have the other technologies besides curbing captured those are called
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high e mission or high-energy low emission technology is in the combined cycle coal-fired then they can become great then with natural gas we need a commitment of all of the above in the energy mix coal and nuclear and natural gas and solar panels we need all that we all want toto protect the environment but from any power plant that i supplied none of them are violating any laws or that create any pollution for the country it is all in the information that is put out there.
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the market we don't have a large public relations program but the obama administration spend 1.2 million dollars against me personally to silence me ander that is taxpayers' moneyas taxpa also with public relations so the information in that people gets is often very skewed because they don't get the information out there we're fortunate to keep our people working with the energy mix of where it is right now. >> host: a special line for the rest of the program june is on the line of a
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bite to say thank you for what you have done for my family my father in great father the have then call miners of our reliance i can remember play in the first and second grade that we lived in the hold that the coal mines owned without that we would have had nothing. mclellan has been our life
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in some of the people of hands never lived it keeps things going in west virginia there is nothing in there no one alleges say to these people were brothers circulators he was 17 going into a coal mine and should tell people for the people around her so let the people though it is not as bad as
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what the democrats are saying. without this:there would be no west virginia or ohio. >> host: would like to respond?. >> guest: correct these people in these areas fight wars are very dedicated and hard-working i respect them ri much that is why i built my headquarters right where you are among the people but more importantly we industry holding down electric rates for all of america. and 1/4 of the cost of electricity from natural gas.
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to keep the is away from mr. obama regulations so they can stop the destruction of coal-fired electricity because we have the and reliable electric t power grid right now.oing to people will die on the operating table if we get another plover for tax for two years ago there is not enough margin to keep the lights on the forget a bad cold snap. that is what people need to be worried about we have an energy poverty problem in the world half of the homes in india don't have a light bulb. i have an office in londonectrib the electric bills have doubled their writing for
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electricity. they shut down all coal-fired electricity so do not put united states of america in that position for no environmental benefit for you could close down every plant and by the obama administration itself theat effects are in measurablerees 0.0 degrees fahrenheit. >> host: we will have to end it there we appreciate your time with us on "washington journal". >> guest: thanks for having me i appreciated. >> host: up next as we continue our focus on the coal industry the sixth district of ohio representative along with other facilities located in that district and hearing
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from the co-director of the ohio valley and the environmental impact of the coal industry but first we talk to those who spend there workday and one was a real road engineer. >> it is fast paced at times and is pretty easygoing. >>, it comes through?. >> one train car there is 70 cars and about 8,000 tons t per train if you break that down at one car i can do the math. >> county trains move per day? ranges between four
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hours and eight depending on what we're doing or the stockpile loading the stockpile usually take save little bit longer. >> host: what is the toughest part about being a t train engineer?. >> guest: the weather keeping an eye out for everybody some were several different contractors. . .our
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>> it's over a differento, contract. >> on the first one and the only one. >> how much training to go through to become a railroad engineer? >> it ranges from 3 - 6 months. it's pretty expensive. there's a lot of regulations and rules. a lot of safety measures. a lot to run in one of these things. they're a little better than a mile long. it's a safety thing. you have to keep your mind in the game the entire time. >> about 300 miles northwest ofo
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washington, d.c., ohio is on the ohio river. this morning's "washington journal" is live from the transloading center there at powhatan points. were talking about the coal industry and regulation. joining us now is congressman bill johnson, republican who sixth district runs along the ohio river. good morning to you. i want to ask you about coal miners health benefits. were coming off a week in which the omnibus spending bill included provisions to support coal miners and the health benefits. why is the federal government health benefits foror coal miners? >> we have to be. these are benefits promised towe these coal miners. the coal industry as you heard mr. murray talk about a little bit ago has kept the lights on in america provided heating in the winter and air-conditioning
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in the summer. it is the least we can do to make sure they get the benefits they have earned from a career they have put into the coal mining industry. the coal miners protection act very important legislation when i was glad to see that we got that done. from losing their health benefits.rt that was important i think we did the right thing. >> host: along with that legislation another piece of legislation you supported was the extreme protection role. can you explain what that was and your involvement. >> absolutely. when i first came to congress ie 2011 i became aware of what the interior department of the office of surface mining and reclamation was trying to do with the role known as thenged e string protection role. at that time was called the
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string buffer zone rule. they change the name of it so it become a political hot alex lamb that in a minute. it was one of the twin pillars of president obama's war onattad coal. strea it attacked the coal industry from the production side. it had nothing to do with protecting streams. it was a gross overreach of a federal authority, we haveee pointed that out to them, we had hearing after hearing from the natural resources committee in congress. but they would not listen. when we had the opportunity to roll that rollback under the congressional review act i was very happy to lead that charge but had a lot of help from members of the house and the senate the major that we got that done. it had nothing to do withcl
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keeping string streams clean. we have federal and state laws on the books. keep in mind that the states regulated about 97% of the regulatory work in the coal industry is done by the states today. you do not need the federal government stepping into something that is a gross overreach that would virtually shut down underground coal mining in america. that's what that rule would ofet done. and fam >> congressman, republican from ohio, our guest until 9:00 o'clock he's taking your calls and questions. a special line for coal miners (2 members.y we will start with michael calling in from pennsylvania. good morning. >> caller: good morning andd thank you for taking my call. i grew up in a small coal mining town in the somerset county
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area. i was a coalminer myself. to 10 it seemed like every five or ten years they put a mandate on s power plants to clean to better clean the coal to where it is today it's so efficient that they say whenever they go into those big smokestacks they take a skid steer and then they get very little -- and it's very cleanburning. but i believe this country was made in we protected them from the world through the use of coal and still making a level part of our history and our heritage. m you do research on solar panels to get the materials you still have to mind the coal on the earth's crust to make solar
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panels the but it has to be heated up to 2500 degrees to make crystal line which makes the solar panels. they are so toxic they don't make them in the united states. they make men foreign countries. so we ship our coal overseas and they make them over there. when they cut them into the square pinholes the dust is harmful to human beings. >> host: we have your point. congressman you can jump in. >> guest: he's right. look, we have basically three forms of energy that provides a baseload of art national utility grid it's coal, natural gas ando nuclear. you cannot provide the baseload of our energy grid with solar, wind or alternative fuels.
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i believe, as do most of my colleagues that i serve within the house believes in a true all of the above policy. obama said that when he was in office that is not what his policies reflected. he makes a good point. i heard mr. murray talk about this earlier, what happened in europe? i have traveled to europe also. i've talked to some of the energy leaders in europe about why they are returning to a higher profile or higher mix of coal-fired energy and their energy profiles. it's because they are unwillingg to pay the exorbitantly high prices for energy that their residential commercial customers have been forced to pay and so europe has learned a toughgh lesson of what it does to a nation when it shuts down your coal energy.y. coal is still the most reliablew
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form of energy on the planet. we needed along with natural gas but he's right, a lot of the components for solar energy are made overseas. we need those jobs created here at home. how do we do that? keeper coal industry going. we have done a lot of work. even the epa has said so themselves. lorene matter in the atmosphere in the united states, we are doing our part. we have learned how to use coale responsibly and environmentally sound late. we should continue to do so. >> host: for our listeners we been showing this chart showing the annual share of u.s. electricity generation by source. the forecast for 2016 coal would
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be 32%, natural gas to be 32%. hydro electric power is 6% and then non- hydro is solar and wind. that's a chart from the is the website. that line for coal miners and family members, bob henderson in kentucky, good morning. >> things for taking my call. b >> caller: i was born in eastern kentucky and there's nothing but coal mining. i now live in western kentucky. coal mining was stopped in washington because they have a high sulfur coal. it doesn't have a third of the bp used in the low sulfur coalmy does. my dad retired from the coal mine, i had to brothers retire from the coal mine had two or
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three brothers in the coal mine but they got out and left. they went to michigan to get work. i love my call miners and that the coal is not good for the atmosphere. everybody knows it. look at china, you can see in the daytime over there because of the pollution from the coal. on the miners benefit i am glad they do it.20 i'm glad the government is providing that. i had 20 years in a factory in michigan and they shut it down and ship the business to foreig. countries to manufacture their stuff cheaper.efits. nobody stop forward to help me with benefits. >> host: congressman. >> guest: he made it a comment
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about cole not being good for the atmosphere. we had have come a long way some of the cleanness plants are right here along the ohio river. the cardinal plant is not too far from here. i one point it was considered the cleanest coal fire plant inn the world. so, i would disagree thats bad o coal-fired energy is bad for the atmosphere. i'm certain that you can use it in responsibility as the chinese do they don't get to the extremes as we do by the way, nobody cares more about the air that we pre-in the water that we drink than those here along the ohio river and coal country that have to breathe it and drink it.
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so we are concerned about the atmosphere two.nts we want coal companies and coal fired power plants to do it environmentally i believe they are doing that and will get better at it in the future. >> we've shown our viewers this chart. it's over the last five quarters in this country. they show coal mining jobs dropped about a percent in the first quarter of 2017 are you expecting to and a great comeback and coal jobs, and if so when?es >> guest: is going to be a phase up. it's not going to happen overnight. but now that president trump has brought down again the two twin pillars of his president obama's war on coal, extreme protection role that he set aside and then
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the halting of the clean powerplant, think you're going to begin to see the coalow industry revive. how long will it take us to get back to where we were before president obama? i don't know. i don't have a crystal ball. i can tell you if we had not stops the extreme protection role, you're talking about 70000 jobs lost in the united states. many along the ohio river in places like the six districts where i live, pennsylvania, west virginia, and kentucky and had the clean powerplant up and stopped you're talking about thousands of more jobs and higher skyrocketing utility jobs i think you're going to see coal jobs stabilize and then begin to trickle down.king morts
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>> host: former new york city mayor michael bloomberg had a column recently in the washington post. he wrote in the column, the fact that you put and call meyer nurse back to work is no more possible from a business standpoint the putting telegraph operators back to work and taking morse code or easement kodak boys back to work. politicians whomama ignore thest engaging in something worse than a calm. they're telling them that the best hope they have and the children have is to be trapped in a dying industry that will poison them. >> guest: that is clearly an ideological point of view.point he's ignoring the fact that you just read off of that chart a few minutes ago that is still a third of america's power. it's provided by the coal industry in many states. like here in ohio it's much higher than that. coal-fired energy provides the
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ability keeper lights on in the summertime so clearly intenderg's statement is an ideological statement intended to frighten and scare people away from the coal industry. it's not going to work. europe is already showing the. europe is going back to a higher mix of coal in their energy profile. they learned that if you're going to have a sustainable economy and robust manufacturing, you have to have energy to be able to provide power to those manufacturing facilities. where does that power come from? from the baseload of your energy grid. in america that's coal, natural gas, nuclear and the other forms of energy, solar provides energy when the sunshine's, wind energe
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provides energy when the wind n blows. we need : natural gas and nuclear. but coal will be here for a lonn time.or >> host: dawn is in new york. >> caller: good anyd i have a comment that i don't think anybody brings up is what caused global warming during the ice age. it wasn't people eating fossil fuel. i would like someone to talk about it. thank you so much. goodbye. >> host: what you like them to talk about? >> i can tell you i was not around during the ice age but i can guarantee that we were not burning : the ice age. i think she makes a good point. >> for that mine bill is inn tennessee, good morning. >> caller: i was born in
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virginia in southwestern part. my dad worked in the coleman for 45 years.n i remember as a kid when it snowed you couldn't even go out and pick up snow because of the sit on it. and the river up there all off the fish died. they just now -- then all of the mine shut down and they put a natural gas the murray wasover saying for the last ten years they have been there over ten years now. they get the gas off of the coal. so there i can go back. the old company owns all of thaa stuff.l gas natural gas is a lot cheaper and
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to me i listen to murray and i live right at a coal powerplant. on a day when it is clear and the sky was blue you'll see the clouds coming from a stack float and. >> thank you for sharing your story. congressman i want you to pick up on the natural gas comments that he referred to there in the sustainability of the natural gas industry. they're saying that they will only last ten years and then the coal will be there longer. do you agree with that? >> guest: i'm not a geologist. i can tell you that along the ohio river we have got more
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resource under our feet that we know what to do with. some people say we got more gas and oil under our feet in thees ohio river then saudi arabia does. but that is not the point. the point is this going to take more than one energy food source to provide the base over energy grid. call has been doing it since world war i, maybe even longer than that. during america's industrialization. it was cold that provided the energy for america to build in and of a. many of the industries that came about came so because they were powering the manufacturingy. operations with coal-fired energy. look, we can talk all day about how inexpensive natural gas is.
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other than a market factor that is true. the truth of the matter is, we need both natural gas and coal to provide america's energy needs. it's not one or the other. it's both. >> host: never going to go to devon calling in from west virginia. good morning. >> caller: yes sir. thank you very much for taking my call. the united nations atomic commission has spent a great deal of research, particularly in china, germany, japan et cetera, to convert the gas that is produced by the coal industry to fertilizers and seed material. the united states we have much
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superior technology.ic energ the atomic emission i emissions uses the electron beam to conduct -- there is cheaper technology to use this in a much superior way. so can we discuss in a creative way the top finding from this group or the other group on research and development and to make a better program, not only for the united states but the world everywhere. >> host: thank you for bringing that up. is that something you been following? >> guest: i'm not sure i can make out everything the caller but i did hear a lot of it.
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technology, there's no question that has played a role in the coal industry a natural gas industry and in the nuclear industry here in america and across the globe. we have learned how to burn coal more efficiently and cleaner and we will continue to do that. we have learned hard to harvest natural gas more efficiently and transported not only to markets but gas powered nuclear energy is becoming modular and smaller. america is the world's problems all this. much of the innovation and conveniences that people around the world enjoy today came from right here in america. as technology improves and it seems like every week we are seeing another advancement in technology. i am certain that as we move
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forward we will continue to find ways to provide the energy too the national energy grid in the war efficient way. i think you're going to see : natural gas be here for a long time. >> a few minutes left, republican from ohio. you represent the district where our c-span cameras are this at morning. was about 20 miles south of west virginia by the other side showing you some pictures on the other side of the stations on the other side of the ohio river those on the line we have set aside from coal miners and family members. humboldt tennessee. good morning. >> a morning. i want to know what are we going to do of what they say is tha'so
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true 20 years from now. it's about money, not about people in the coal miners what about them, they going to walkway from them like they did before and leave them as some of the poor people in the world? >> caller: i think we demonstrated in the house and the senate with omnibus bill that was signed here recently.ce we are concerned about making sure those minors are not left out.lem with we saw the health benefits problem with $1.3 billion over ten years to make sure that 22000 mine workers were not stripped of their health benefits. we will continue to work that issue to try to resolve the pension problem.the it's a bigger issue but a problem that needs to be addressed.
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the intent is not to leave anybody out. that is not the way america doer business.yo >> let's head to new jersey. >> caller: good morning. thank you for taking my call. an us that a lot of people are very quick to regulate the coal industry and they say the emissions is the reason. then i asked them, what if americans had to turn off their lights for five hours per day to save emissions? they often say no. so i find that a lot of people are and jelena do something foreign to them. when it comes down to themselves they're not so willing to to not turning their lights off or sacrificing their own comfort and cheap electricity.
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>> caller: isn't it amazing how that works, whether it is balancing a budget or cutting spending which we so desperately need to do in washington, d.c. everybody seems to be all on board for making big change until that change affects them. one of the conversations i like to have that i often enjoy having is with those who say we should not be using coal energy, we need to be using electric cars and those kinds of things, they go home they plug the car into an electric outlet in their home never even considering the fact that the energy that provides the power to their home is provided by coal-fired energy.ongressm but somehow that goes unnoticed. >> congressman, we appreciate you taking the time, sapphire studio when you're back in d.c.
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>> i would love to, thank you. >> cap next as we continue our focus on the coal industry will hear from a codirector of the ohio valley coalition. will hear about her work in the environmental impacts of coal and later with nick a fifth-generation coalminer who is an author, first on a recent visit we stopped by a restaurant across the river in moundsville west virginia. we talked with a few former coal miners about life in the minds. >> it means a lot for the coal miners along here. every week others coal mines. lolot of people are out of jobs. what people do in their out of jobs?
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>> myself --dash. [inaudible] i retired and 89 is a coalminer. i got a job at the stool well and stayed there and went back to the coal mine. it's is better secure job. i retired after 25 years at their. >> is it hard for minors to find a different job? do they want to leave the mininr business?siness? >> no i made it, anybody can make it. >> for anybody is not been 800 feet below ground, what it's what is it like?
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>> beautiful. you never know your underground once you get down there and are accustomed to it. it's dark you put your hand up to your nose and not see it. but you can still feel the heat but you can't see nothing. but a flicker of light you can see a mile away. depends on the train. it's all flat, up and down andat curvy. you go with the contour of the land. >> to miss it? >> yes. i started out as a general labor. i kept my union card and i was a boss also. [inaudible] my last days were as a fire boss. >> what did you like the most about it? >> it was a challenge. every day was a different
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a different thing to do. whether you on the rooftop you had a monitor and watch everybody behind and watch everybody at the corners. it's a challenge. just like anybody else he have to get back or you were going to get hurt. . . the focus on the coal industry this morning from point, it's murray energy's there.oading facility joining us on site is vivian stockman, she serves as vice ohio valley he environmental coalition. tell our viewers about your and its work. guest: well, ohio valley coalition or ovec
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is known as hat huntington, west virginia, on the other side of the river river near kentucky. we've been, celebrating our 30th now. right .... living room as just a group, a bunch of citizens got together with the corporation was going >> people got together and it became a multi year battle but the corporation decided to go to burn or waste -- or dump the waste in our neighborhood. that is what we started with. we have gone into assorted campaigns and people have brought different solutions to life for us. i think we focus on environmental justice and social all of this in the lens of human
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rights. the climate and water and human rights. we have several campaigns going on. one of them is revoling around the nine pipelines that would bring fractured gas to the area and we are worried about that in terms of the climate. i think you have a photo of what a that is and homes behind it. >> yeah, we can show our viewers that photo. explain where mount top removal takes place and why you so concerned about mountain top removal? >> it is going on in cower
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different states and prevalent in southern west virginia. we got involved into issue after citizens came to us being to the coal companies and the local politicians and state politicians and the pral federal politicians. mountain type removal is the type of coal mining in which coal companies can blast off eight feet of the mountains to get to them being full. and you know, blast is an operative word there. there is a hearing going on where they are trying get a hearing for an 865 acre expansion of mountain top removal mine on coal mountain river.
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that type of mining detonates tons of explosives. there was an uproar over the mother of all bombs dropped in afghanistan, as there should be, but that time of bombing is going on by coal companies in our mountains in west virginia. there is something like 200 miles and streams that have been buried. about a million acres of forest have been destroyed in coal mining and communities are driven into extinction. people that live nearby are suffering health problems. you are more likely to have
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cancer, cardio vascular problems, birth defects in your children than people living in areas where there is no coal mining. it is a huge problem economically and environmentally and it is annihilating communities. when we first learned about the problem we held one of the first forums on mountain top removal and have been educating and attempting to stop this practice every since. >> we should tell viewers if they want to check out our website it is we have talking vivian from the ohio valley coalition as we focus on the coal industry and impacts of the industry. taking your calls and comments.
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202-748-800o for coal minors and families. 202-748-8001 for the eastern and central people and 202-748-8001 for mountain and pacific time. we will start with the coal mine. >> reporter: thank you. good morning. my grandfather died from black young and my father escaped the coal mines. i am very concerned about congress ryan's energy policy in america and i am very glad you are telling the truth about the coal and its destruction of the environment. we don't need all this coal. there is very new industries dependent on coal. they can easily convert to electricity and we could be making electricity.
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portugal is making 13% of their energy from offshore tumblers. so they can be put on rivers as well. you can get all the energy we need from the sun and the rivers and oceans. i am just absolutely disgusted that they never tell the truth about how radiation comes from the nuke plants and the poison and acids and carcinogens coming from coal. >> host: vivian, you talked about congress johnson who played a role in the stream protection rule. i want to get your perspective on the impacts of repealing that rule. it is very telling one of the first acts of the administration is to roll back the rules in the
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coal industry. as we transition out of the coal era, we are going to need clean water. we also do need to remember the coal minors and help with the transition for the minors. the people who have sacrificed so much. it is important to underscore people that are against mountain top removal are not against the coal minor. i think that is very important. we are excited in huntington that wejust recently won america's best community contest. part of that whole transition that is going to be taking place in huntington is one thing that is going on that we are a part of is some training for now unemployed minors or veterans or underemployed youth to teach folks about new careers in hazmat and also in solar instillation.
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i think that is important, as important as clean water that we have sort of a just transition. i think what the caller said is true that utilities themselves, the american or appalachian n power just said the consumer doesn't demand renewables. they are heading toward renewables. when you hear, i am sure the congressman said job-killing regulations. when you hear that, please, dig deeper and in most cases regulations are actually going to at least have a net effect in terms of jobs. a net benefit for jobs. and they are all about protecting the minor and the mine industry. >> you talk about transitioning out of the mines. we had zach coleman on last month and we had a cover story
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in the christian science monitor on this topic; finding life after coal. april 10th, 2017 talks about the appalachian towns. back to the lines for coal member and family members. alfonzo is in brownsville, texas. good morning. >> caller: i was a steel worker for 22 years and i know what it is to loose a job. it was the greed of the congress and the politicians that pushed me out. it as a different situation for him. i would like to know what he thinks about all the regulations and the truth about these
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regulations in the environment. they are blaming the coal industry. i would watch out what these congressman, these politicians are doing, because i know what it is to get out of the job i had for it 222 years. >> host: we are with vivian stockman and i want to get your thoughts on the topics. >> calle >> guest: it is interesting so many people didn't even bother voting in the last election because everybody is so fed up with politics as usual on bogue -- both sides of the aisle. that is one reason we work on campaign finance reform issues. when there is no much money in politics or corporations are funding at the expense of the worker, at the expense of the
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community member, and you know our policies are for the corporations not the people. >> host: john is in brooklyn, new york. good morning. >> caller: good morning, c-span and thank you for taking my call. i have a two part question. first one is concerning the exhaust drains of the coal power plants. are you satsified with the monitoring on the stacks that are measuring real time and the exhaust.
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>> host: thank you for questions. take them in whatever order you want. >> guest: let's go with the lie of clean coal. you will hear this phrase over and over again and just because you hear something over and over again doesn't make it true. it is advertising and propaganda. if you look at where coal is mined it is paid for in deep mi mi miners health or paid for by the mountains and streams or communities that are driven to extintction or the people that remain it is their health. you look at prepping coal for the market. i think you have a photo of a man and their son standing at the sink with their water. that is the result of the cold prep plant injecting billions of
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gallons of waste underground and taking what we used to be sweet photoable watwater. they use deadly chemicals but the workers have been part of the class action lawsuit because they are getting sick and dying like slides. >> on the picture of the two people with the water there, who are those people. those communities more than 700 families joined what came a class action lawsuit about the contamination of the water there.
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you had kids with gallbladder issues and every house had a rare issue obviously if your water is like that. that is not even talking about when you transport the coal. when you burn the coal, the coal ash, the administration is trying to role back combination. there is a giant disaster. we have 30,000 premature deaths on the mining side and premature
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deaths and cancer. clean coal, please. >> you mention the smoke stacks over your shoulder belong to the mitchell power plants and the camera station power plants that has been shutdown. plants that are run by the american electric power company. we talk to one of the single members about the plant across the river to let viewers know what they are seeing and the shot over the season. claire is in fredric town, ohio. >> caller: thank you, c-span. i would like to apologize for the man just on from ohio. these people lie so much. i am so devastated when i see the mountain top removal stuff.
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i have been talking to people about it and the after effects alone should have stopped this on nature. why is all the corporations owning all of our nature? they are moving in now through nature preserves. the things that the government setup for us to save nature for the people. now all the parks are going to be open. thank you so much for what you do. i run a clean farm. 50 acres. no grain. our animals are all on grass and pulling carbon out of the air. that is the best we can to. >> thanks for sharing your story.
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vivian stockman. >> guest: the caller is talking about cleaner agricultural. there are solutions to this. and the wind and solar in the last year far outpaced wind and solar jobs far outpaced coal and in terms of the new generation coming on in the united states, wind and solar is just taking off. in fact, i am a little bit worried we are letting china get ahead of us on that. we should really be encouraging policies that bring these kinds of jobs, west virginia deserves these kinds of jobs. coal is a part of our culture. but we have to look to the future. i think if you ask any coal minor they don't want their kids to be coal minors. they are prod of what they have done and should be and shouldn't be forgotten. fortunately, they have just
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gotten their health benefits but they had to fight for these from bankrupt corporations that intentionally go bankrupt to get out of the obligations. >> renewable energy issue that the caller brings up and that you bring up, steven moore is an economic consultant with freedom works and had a recent column in the washington time. he writes renewable energy is one or two decades away from being a major internally resource in the world. until that happens coal and natural gas will compete as low priced and domesticly produced energy sources for the 21st century america. want to get your response. >> well, you know, just a few years ago, coal was 50% och our electricity supply and now it is down to 30% and a lot of that came up from natural gas as the competitor. natural gas is what is bringing
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about the down turn in the coal economy. but at the same time, renewables are not taking off. australia just recently is talking about completely skipping the so-called transition of oil and gas. and we are all for skipping that because of what the oil and gas is doing over here. we need resources and policies and directed toward the news and it is changing every day. you see incredible news about the innovation, vertical wind mills, plans afoot to perhaps make a mountain top removal site
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in kentucky be a solar farm which makes sense to us if you can find a stable area on the site to turn those into solar farms if there is not a tree growing there. it is like a manmade desert and you could also install vertical windmills. i think we need to speed up the change to renewables as quickly as possible due to the climate impact and water impact of our dependence on fossil fuel. >> we only have a few minutes left. a few callers on that line for coal minors and fam lemembers. let's hear from two of them. mike, up first in beaver dam, kentucky. good morning. >> caller: good morning to you. i will explain a little background. i went from college too a co-op company and that was going to be
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my career. i am a fourth generation coal minor. in west kentucky we have a lot of opportunities but that was the skill i went into. my career started and ended with my retirement in 2013 which i finished in west virginia. i am a union coal miner so i have a lot that a lot don't have to fall back on. i worked in four different states and eight different coal mines from utah to illinois to indiana, west virginia to kentucky. what is going on right now is a cultural thing. i was at the september rally with the coal miners at the rally about them loosing their insurance base d on the
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decision. there wasn't one national news rally that covered that d.c. rally. we found there is a difference between the elite in washington who spread lies about the effect of coal and coal mining on families and communities. i have been around coal fire plants all my life. there has never been a news story coming out about the harmful effects of one of the coal mines or these coal fire plants. >> host: mike, thanks for sharing your story. douglas is in lima, ohio. good morning. >> caller: good morning. >> host: go ahead. >> caller: my question is if coal is so bad for our industry what about all the plants that went bankrupt under the obama administration? what about the nuclear power plants when they melt down and
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all the nuclear waste that is even more harmful than the coal? why are they not talking about those kind of environments? >> i think we have to look exactly where uranium is mined. people are unhealthy. we are fortunate in west virginia we don't have nuclear plants and that is why we are not working on that issue. but we have allies who are worried about nuclear waste and that is just considered another fuel that we need to move off of. and there are loads of studies about the health impacts of power plants and i think the people living near power plants do suffer quite a bit and we
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premature deaths are something like 30,000 a year from power plant emission. >> host: so to bill in waynesboro. you are on live. >> caller: i was listening to the guest on mountain top removal and it reminded me when i drove to west virginia and saw mountains with their tops removed. it was absolutely shocking. shocking. my jaw dropped. i had never seen environmental destruction on such a large stale. these mountains that were thousands of years old were ruined. they say they reclaim them but those mountains never look the same. in my opinion, there is no economic gain that ever makes it
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worth while to do this to our environment to communities in west virginia. >> guest: we are surprised we are still having to point out this is an insane practice. if a foreign entity was bombings the mountains like a coal entity does it would have stopped long ago. it is unfathomable we are saying this. it is harming environmental health and there is a rule that says it takes 500 years to recover. you have reclamation which is
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called lip stick on pork and the water pollution going on is ongoing from these battlefields. even the mud river water shed has been thoroughly studied. 40% of the streams are buried there and the impact from the water shed are staggering and ultimately it is the damage on the health and communities. >> host: sam on the line for coal members and family members. good morning. >> caller: good morning. i was brought up in the coal industry. i am not an environmental engineer and have been for 30 years. i wasn't a big proponent of climate change and understood effects of co 2 but heavy metals are interesting.
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there is mercury and other items that comes in with the coal. those are very well mitigated and usually contained. there are more of these released in the sludge from a concentration point of view than there is from what is coming out of the gas sulfurization water. the power plants themselves go to a great extent to hold the waste water and recycle and reuse the waste water and capture those heavy metals. i am using algae to sequester
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heavy metals from coal burning power plants with quite a bit of success. >> host: give you a chance to respond. >> guest: yes, sure. if it is not going out the stacks it is going into the waste water and that is going into the leaking of the ground water and catastrophically spill sometimes. you can check several didn't communities that are suing over contaminated ground water. i don't think they are doing a good job at sequestering it. all those heavy metals are sequestered with left in the ground. >> thanks so much for your time. thanks for having me.
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>> up next, we hear from nick mull who is a fifth generation coal minor. this is a picture from the march 19th edition of the washington post and that is kevin hughes with president trump. kevin hughes a long time murray energy employee who was picked to attend the white house ceremony when president trump signed the legislation on coal debris. c-span caught up with kevin hughes and talked to him about his work in the coal mine. >> my name is kevin hughes. i am the general manager of the coal company. >> how long have you been in the mining business? >> 42 years this may. >> why did you get into it? >> local jobs in western pennsylvania where i grew up. got out of school, got married, started a family and the mining
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industry has been very good. >> is it generational? >> my father was a steel worker. i am the first generation of a coal miner. >> what is a day like for you? >> work on plans for the mine moving forward, deal with any labor issues, several things, working with federal agencies on violations and safety aspects of that. >> how is coal mined? >> we use continuous miner development. we set-up with the panels with the continuous miners and take it out. >> how many people work in the mine? >> 348 union people, approximately 120 salary people. >> how has that changed over the past eight years? >> there was a time when there was more coal workers. most lines prior to the last eight years of the obama administration.
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>> what are specific ways that impacted you? >> the coal mining industry has suffered over the last eight years. we are on the rebound which everybody is grateful for. all the young people i work with are very excited about having an opportunity to continue having an opportunity to support people and their families. >> how are you seeing that rebound? we are picking up a little. i think it will be slow but contractually it looks like it is turning a positive corner somewhat on the rules and regulations there is light at the end of the tunnel. >> what are some of the regulati regulations that most impact your daily life? >> i think a lot of the ones past in the eight years were detrimental to coal on purpose. i don't think they served any environmental purpose other than destroy the coal industry.
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>> you got to talk to president trump. how did that go? >> we went to gowadwashington d and found trump a man of his word and we were fortunate enough to be with him when he signed the bill in washington d.c. >> we are back here in ohio this morning at the murray energy company transloading facility there. it is about 300 miles northwest of washington d.c. nick mullein is here wus.
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how far back does the mining history go in your family? >> it goes back to my second great grandfather who worked for a virginia company. >> what is the thoughtful coal minor? what do you write about? why did you start it? >> the thoughtful coal minor is my way of speaking to the rhetoric that comes from industry and environmentalists to find common ground between the two speaking specifically to miner's issues and help give a voice and like i say try to keep the bias out. but at the same time working to get the truth out there. >> and what do you do these guys? you are a former coal minor. how long did you serve in the mines and what do you do? >> i worked in the mining industry four years. spent three yours underground.
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there were not a lot of decent jobs in the area i worked. my family had been there for seven generations including my kids so wanted to find something with a living wage and ended up in the coal mines like a lot of other people. it was a good job and provided a lot of money to my family but it came with issues including health issues. anybody who has worked any time in the mine and known anybody who worked in the mines knows that is a problem. >> what are the places you don't think the mining industry and environmentalists are speaking to when it comes to this discussion we are having in this country about coal mining? >> i think the day to day life of coal miners. listening to bob murray earlier, speaking to the dignity and honor of the job and didn't talk
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a lot about the health issues. the black lung problems we are having. didn't speak to a lot of the disabling injuries the miners have. we want to provide for our families but don't want to give up our health for it. mining does create a lot of environmental problems. i was witness it to myself. we had a mountain top removal job behind our house and it turned our family spring where we sourced water from to acidic drainage. but we have to understand there are economic implications and people who work in the industry have to find a way to make a living especially in areas this economically depressed and that has to come from the mono economy.
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>> we hear the term the blue green divide in terms of to the mining community. what does that mean? >> polarization between environmentalists and the working class. a lot of the jobs in this area do have environmental implications and environmenti environmentalists want to protect that environment. people need jobs and they want to protect the jobs so there is a barrier between the two. it is being created and inflamed more by the coal industry themselves. they point at the environmentalists and environmental regulations as job killers. there is no doubt that there has been some regulations that harmed the coal industry's bottom line but at the same time it is not exactly down as translating into the families as much as they mark it up.
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>> another part of this is washington d.c. what don't you think washington d.c. understands about the mining culture where you have? >> i don't believe they really understand what it is like to be a coal miner. to face the reality of going to work every day to provide for your family with no other job alternatives that would provide anywhere near the same amount of money and benefits. i am sure they are proud sacrifices to make and it isn't a question anyone should have to make and i think representatives in washington fall short of that. >> the thoughtful coal minor writer here if you want to check
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it out go to special like for coal members and their family. if you are in the eastern or central time zone 202-748-8001. mountain or pacific 202-748-8002. nancy has been waiting in washington. >> thank you. thanks mr. mullein. it is fascinating listening to you. i have a lot of questions for you. can you tell us what they are putting in the streams especially with the rollback of the regulations that trump rolled back? and also, if we close the coal
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mines and power plants, could there not be cleanup jobs? i am all for people having honorable jobs that support their families. but at some point we have to realize our only home, the planet, is at stake. >> excellent questions. some things going into the water is heavy metals. any time that you mine especially surface mining, you are taking the large chunks of mountain and rocks that would normally be, you know, water would run through the nooks and crannies and not get a lot of the heavy metals in there.
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you are crushing them up into a fine powder with the blasting and that makes it soluable. ulse, it adds oxygen to the sulfur and that creates acidification of the water and that helps leech more heavy metals. in the mining process you have oils and chemicals that leak out of equipment. gear rolls using cases for heavy machinery. i saw my fair share of that leaking into the mines as we worked. there is a lot of opportunities throughout appalachian mountains
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trying to prevent erosion and addressing the water issues that follow there is all sorts of jobs in that that most miners are trained to operate the machinery to do that. beyond that, miners are smart people and have a lot of ingenuity. you have electiontritions and repairment that can be retained into other forms of repair and electrical work. perhaps fast paced, i don't know, electrical programs throughout the state there isopss but just need the funds.
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>> host: nancy is on the line of coal workers or family members. >> caller: my grand father was a coal minor and i grew up in the business. i want to talk about the different types of coal mine. my son is a mining engineer. mind top mining is not mining and strip mining is totally different. doesn't really involve that many engineers or sfwl -- mountain top mining is an abomination.
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there are more explosives used in the appalachian mountains every month than there was in japan combined. >> i would have to agree with that. it is killing jobs. it doesn't take nearly as many men or women to be able to perform that job and they are paid less. underground mining requires more people and does pay more but it does have its issues as well. why starting to see issues with
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severe cases of black lung among the new generations of coal miners. it comes down to pushing production and that is the game. they are here to get the coal out of the ground and make a profit off it. they try any which way and take short cuts in terms of making that prostate department's decision increase. >> let's head to huntington, west virginia. lowell is on the line. >> caller: thank you for taking my call. i have to express how much i appreciate c-span. hydraulic generators on plants
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and they can be replaced with about 125 generators. you don't have to burn fuel whatsoever. >> yeah, there is definitely alternatives to energy. we could certainly put in hydro electric plants and agree there are a lot that could do well. that combined with another energy. we can retire so many plants and institute so many renewable sources but we have to decrease the baseload and that means becoming more energy efficient and we are lagging well behind
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the rest of the world in putting into effect a lot of energy e efficiency laws and regulations. >> host: judy, silver spring, maryland on the family or coal mining line. are you with us? >> caller: yes. i am sorry. thank you for taking my call. i grew up in pennsylvania in 1944 with all the coal in the '50s. it is our town. we could no longer use coal already in 1950. we knew it wasn't good for us. in the mean time, i had four family members die from black hu hung -- lung and one died from alcoholism because he could not stand working in the mines. anything we can do to get rid of
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the coal we should be trying to do. i can't see why we can continue doing it. thanks for my call. i will take my answer off the air. >> what is your response? >> yeah, that is one of the things we have to realize. i am certainly sorry to hear about your family members. i lost my great grandmother of black lung and i don't have a memory of him without having a nasal conson trart and oxygen in. coal hasn't been kind to appalachian area. there have been billions of tons of coal mined in appalachian shipped and sold but we remain the so
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some of the most economically stressed areas of the country. it doesn't translate into helping the people or the coal miners. there was evidence john hopkins doctors were being paid to hide the cases and read the x-rays wrong. there has been push back with the safety legislature. and when it comes to the environmental regulations, of course they will fight those because it means they have to do things much better without taking as many short cuts and protecting streams and water sources. that translates into time and money that takes away from the profits. we have to be looking forward a different future especially for our kids. a lot of people want to say this is their family tradition and it has done so much for families.
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coal mining certainly has. i was raised on coal. we had a pretty good life because of coal but my parents never wanted me to end up in the mine and i never want mine to be in the mine either. >> what did your parents saw to you when you did end up in the mine? >> they understood i was between a rock and a hard place for a job. my mom said i don't like it but you have to do what you have to do. whenever i left the mine, she cried. she was glad to see me out. >> nick mullein is the author of the thoughtful coal miner and the founder of breaking clean. can you tell viewers what that is? >> breaking clean is a small company i created. a mini communication company.
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i considering a non-profit but i try to use it to create media and develop stories that are place based to community-based to tell the issues of extraction not just in appalachian but anywhere it occurs and companies go in to take advantage of resources without paying back to the people who live there. it is also a means of doing public outreach and education about sustainable issues and our need to become more energy efficient and more thrifty with resources. >> time for a few more calls. staying on the line for coal miners and family members. adam, jacksonville, ohio. good morning. >> caller: good morning. >> host: go ahead, you are on with nick mullein. >> caller: i have a question. i was a coal miner for about as long as you have been. a welder, mechanic as well. i got hurt august 16th, or the
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night of the 17th early in the morning. herniated disk and i missed work and couldn't get out of bed. i herniated disk. my question is how can a guy go about getting things approved when the coal mine is working against the coal miner himself and workers comp is doing the same.
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a it is employee owned. >> nick mulleins. >> yeah, that is one of the things that doesn't same to make it through the coal industries media campaign and the friends of coal organizations campaigns. they don't talk about people like you or my friend who had a rib roll out and crushed him under the shuttle car and how much the comp insurance fought him and the company fought him for another friend who spent 30 years in the mine and developed black young and lung issues and the company fought him to keep him from being able to get disability. came with black lung cases. if you talk to injured miners
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and hear what they say you will hear better about the coal industry. not the coal keeps the lights on and pride and dignity. you hear what happens to coal miners and how the companies think about them. it has been that way since the beginning. people would also say the mule is more important than the miner and miners are just tools and as soon as you are used up they can discard you and get something better. they have been doing that as well with these being supported by coal miners. they are here to support themselves and that is it. anything else is just trying to get people to believe they are here for the better. >> we will take our viewers to
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the senate foreign relation committee in a minute but want to get to as many calls as i can. robert is in brooklyn, new york. >> caller: what percentage of the coal in this country is taking from coal mining and what percentage is using strip mining? >> nick mulleins, is that something you know about? >> i can't quote it off the top of my head. there has been changes due to regulations and the downturn in the coal industry. my first guess is strip mining increased especially since it is a cost effective form of mining and requires more labor overhead. >> let's go to lyndon in piketon, ohio. >> lyndon, good morning. >> thank you for taking my call. just a quick note here.
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i have a lot of involvement in trying to address this matter. there are solutions. the key there is all about economics. the miners and poor folks in the rural areas if they need jobs they need money. it is not they necessarily have to work in the coal mines. they recognize the dangers like the gentlemen is saying. a little history on myself here as a former marine. i worked with a chemical engineer eight years ago and submitted to a posal to the local university with regard to a complete dynamic reactor for making bounties. we chose bounties because it was thoroughly clean and the only fuel authorized as a one to one replacement. our reactor we designed cost 1/20th of what the industry specks were and we used less
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than 60% of the alcohols the normal systems use. the big component was the targeting model. our numbers with the university up in north dakota where they claimed there was going to be the gas up there and they had all these jobs up there and now it is destitute it showed the models produced over 500 percent more than soybeans and they were perfectly edible >> a lot there. i will let you pick up on what you want to. >> there are alternatives and like you said you don't have to necessarily work in the coal mine. a lot of the guys i worked with i heard it said a lot. i would work another job in a
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heartbeat if i could find another job and i think a lot would take a pay cut especially knowing how volatile the market and industry is i am 37 years old and saw two busts that the left families devastated. we struggled and my mom had to take a job and i had uncles and there was a huge out migration of people searching for jobs. people would like alternatives and i don't think anybody is married to the coal industry in terms of employment. there are some who are dedicated and proud but i think even they would perhaps consider a job that didn't risk their life and health in the long term and again whenever it comes back to energy efficiency and renewables and developing other energy sources that is the way we can do these thingsism we can tackle this problem.
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if we were not so wasteful with energy we would not have a wasteful energy problem. >> if you want to read more about mullein's work is it is thoughtful coal miner. thank you so much for taking time this morning. >> that is going to do it for the program. thank you so much to bill the great camera man who has been showing the pictures you have been seeing. >> c-span's washington journal live every day with news and policy issues that impact you. ....
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