Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Allegheny County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
A Pittsburgh conference examining a possible resurgence of coal markets opened Monday with a dour view of the industry from one of its most controversial leaders.
“We have the absolute destruction of the American coal industry. If you think it’s coming back, you don’t understand the business. Or you’re smoking dope,” Robert E. Murray, CEO of Ohio-based Murray Energy, told several hundred industry executives gathered for the Platts 37th Coal Marketing Days.
Murray, whose company has filed four lawsuits against the Obama administration over proposed environmental rules, mixed market predictions with political vitriol, mostly aimed at the White House and climate change.
States and the energy industry should work together to improve carbon-capturing technology to save coal-burning power plants and coal-related jobs threatened by federal clean air regulations, Gov. Tom Corbett said on Tuesday.
Speaking at a coal industry conference at Nemacolin Woodlands Resort in Fayette County, the Shaler Republican joined a chorus of voices complaining that environmental regulations will push coal out as an electricity source.
“If you take one energy source out of the mix, you just know the cost of electricity will go up,” Corbett told about 100 people at the Nemacolin Energy Institute gathering.
He later announced he would work with Wyoming Gov. Matthew H. Mead and other coal-producing states on research and eventually build a joint testing center for affordable emission-control technology.