Gibbs Joins Coal Caucus, Votes to Protect Coal-Related Jobs

July 22, 2015
Press Release

WASHINGTON, DC – This afternoon, the House of Representatives passed the Improving Coal Combustion Residuals Regulation Act, H.R. 1734. The legislation will allow states to create their own permit process regarding management, disposal and recycling of coal ash, a byproduct of coal energy.  H.R. 1743 gives states the ability to create regulations, sometimes more stringent than those finalized by the Environmental Protection Agency and also protects 316,000 coal-related jobs nationwide.

Following passage of H.R. 1734, Congressman Bob Gibbs released the following statement:

“The coal industry is a vital part of the Ohio economy, not just for energy but for use of recycled byproducts in concrete, cement and drywall sheeting.  H.R. 1734 will allow states to permit the recycling use and disposal of coal ash in a safe and responsible manner.  I’m proud to be a new member of the House Coal Caucus and to support this common-sense legislation to promote beneficial use of coal byproducts.”

The Director of Communications for Lorain-Medina Rural Electric Cooperative, Terry Mazzone, also commented on H.R. 1734:

“Lorain-Medina Rural Electric Cooperative and the other 23 Ohio electric cooperatives support this legislation because our power supplier, Buckeye Power, is able to sell a portion of this non-hazardous material to a gypsum wall board manufacturer. This reduces landfill costs and the sales revenue offsets some of our power plants operating costs. The bottom line is this bill will preserve these cost savings to our members.”

The Improving Coal Combustion Residuals Regulation Act will also allow the EPA to review and approve states’ permit processes and implement a process for states that decline to do so. 

For more information, visit the Energy and Commerce Committee website.