Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Somebody else who should have voted for Clinton

Strip mine, plant, and waste ponds, Colstrip, 1984. Photo by David T. Hanson.

This NPR story about Colstrip, Montana, home of the second-largest coal-fired power plant in the West, and a town now dying because they know it's not going to last much longer: real estate values have plunged and everybody's mortgage is underwater:

[REPORTER NATHAN] ROTT: The irony, though, here is there was a plan for people...
REX ROGERS: That's the Clean Power Plan.
ROTT: ...President Obama's plan to reduce carbon emissions. Rex Rogers keeps a copy of it, all 1,560-some pages, at the union hall. Rogers represents about 250 workers at the power plant here. He's a business manager for the local chapter of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, or IBEW. And as such, he fought against the Clean Power Plan because it likely would have meant closures here. Fast forward to now. The Clean Power Plan is stopped. The Trump administration is working on a repeal.
ROGERS: But yet we see coal plants shutting down. Well, the concern with that is, built into the Clean Power Plan...
ROTT: In some of those 1,500 pages was a section.
ROGERS: ...About transitioning, taking care of the workers in those parts of it.
ROTT: It was the Obama administration's way of saying, yes, we know this will close down plants; here is our plan to cushion the fall. Now Rogers says that cushion is gone, and there's nothing being proffered by the new administration to replace it.
ROGERS: Even though we won the war on coal, it doesn't appear that there was anything in that for the workers.
The Republican plan was never to "save jobs". Just to squeeze out the last bit of rent and then abandon them.

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