Happiness: Coal CEO Celebrates Trump Repeal of Unfair Anti-Coal Rule

Robert Murray, CEO of Murray Energy, USA's Largest Underground Coal Miner

Robert Murray, CEO of Murray Energy, USA’s Largest Underground Coal Miner

Guest essay by Eric Worrall

On Thursday President Trump liberated coal miners from the shackles of an Obama rule many in the industry believe was designed to destroy the coal industry.

If you want to see happiness, see the following video of Robert Murray, founder and CEO of Murray Energy, America’s largest underground coal mining business, explaining what Trump’s repeal of a grossly unfair Obama administration rule means for himself, and for the 10s of thousands of workers who depend on his business for their livelihoods.


My favourite quote from the video;

This was a victory, not only for the coal miners to be their at the signing by President Trump, I worry about the couple who’ve got a nestegge, trying to balance their budget after working all their lives, and they’re paying out 22% of what they make for energy right now. That woman that is trying to raise a child on one income. That manufacturer of a product. This regulation from the Obama administration had no environmental benefit at all. It was a deliberate attempt by the radical people in the Obama administration to eliminate underground coal mining, the most environmentally acceptable way to mine coal. We’re down here 1000ft Joe, they don’t even know we’re down there. But this rule illegally took a ’77 law that applied only to surface mining, and stopped underground mining, 1000ft down. Folks don’t even know we’re down there Joe, 1000ft. So what we’ve done now, the house and the senate used the continuing resolution act, the second time ever since the law was passed in 1996, to get rid of this radical rule which had no environmental benefit, but destroyed the lives of our coal miners.

The rule which was removed;

Trump signs bill undoing Obama coal mining rule

BY DEVIN HENRY – 02/16/17 03:54 PM EST

President Trump on Thursday signed legislation ending a key Obama administration coal mining rule.

The bill quashes the Office of Surface Mining’s Stream Protection Rule, a regulation to protect waterways from coal mining waste that officials finalized in December.

The legislation is the second Trump has signed into law ending an Obama-era environmental regulation. On Tuesday, he signed a Congressional Review Act (CRA) resolution undoing a financial disclosure requirement for energy companies.

Both the mining and financial disclosure bills are the tip of a GOP push to undo a slate of regulations instituted in the closing days of the Obama administration. The House has passed several CRA resolutions, and the Senate has so far sent three of them to President Trump for his signature.

Read more: http://thehill.com/policy/energy-environment/319938-trump-signs-bill-undoing-obama-coal-mining-rule

The text of the stream protection rule (issued December 2016);


We, the Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement (OSMRE or OSM), are revising our regulations, based on, among other things, advances in science, to improve the balance between environmental protection and the Nation’s need for coal as a source of energy. This final rule will better protect water supplies, surface water and groundwater quality, streams, fish, wildlife, and related environmental values from the adverse impacts of surface coal mining operations and provide mine operators with a regulatory framework to avoid water pollution and the long-term costs associated with water treatment. We have revised our regulations to define “material damage to the hydrologic balance outside the permit area” and require that each permit specify the point at which adverse mining-related impacts on groundwater and surface water would reach that level of damage; collect adequate premining data about the site of the proposed mining operation and adjacent areas to establish an adequate baseline for evaluation of the impacts of mining and the effectiveness of reclamation; adjust monitoring requirements to enable timely detection and correction of any adverse trends in the quality or quantity of surface water and groundwater or the biological condition of streams; ensure protection or restoration of perennial and intermittent streams and related resources; ensure that permittees and regulatory authorities make use of advances in science and technology; ensure that land disturbed by mining operations is restored to a condition capable of supporting the uses that it was capable of supporting before mining; and update and codify the requirements and procedures for protection of threatened or endangered species and designated critical habitat. Approximately thirty percent of the final rule consists of editorial revisions and organizational changes intended to improve consistency, clarity, accuracy, and ease of use.

Read more: https://www.regulations.gov/document?D=OSM-2010-0018-10631

All Murray wants is a level playing field. He’s happy to take the economic fight to his competitors in the gas industry, and compete to provide American with the cheapest possible energy. All he wants is a chance to be able to continue to provide a livelihood for the 10s of thousands of Americans his company employs.

The legacy of President Obama’s irrational crusade against coal is ruined lives and broken hopes. President Trump is doing everything in his power to undo the damage.

128 thoughts on “Happiness: Coal CEO Celebrates Trump Repeal of Unfair Anti-Coal Rule

  1. Everything that Trump is doing is for the BENEFIT of everyday, working Americans.
    This is totally against everything that the far-left stand for.

      • Its’ trust but verify.
        We foolishly trusted Obama’s “hope and change” meme and we ended up hoping he’d go away without completely destroying our country. His attempts at “transforming America” into a copy of European socialist nation-states are being reversed even as we speak.

    • When will the rest of America realize that the Left gave us all the shaft while Trump’s Economic Populist Nationalism gives the working class the mine itself?

    • (actually AndyG55 I wrote this “I agree with you about Trump and his transparency proofs of what’s goin’ on, making us all seeing him acting like a normal management specialist who is doing a good job)
      And, the far right, bro. Did those Republicans do anything while these people took over our country? They said Trump is their enemy and they’re miffed.
      People better stand up to both (it’s humor, kids: about TRILLIONS of STOLEN dollars) demonicrats and repugnicans and not worship and some altar among em all.
      All of em – ALL of em – close enough I’ll be satisfied with whatever math someone comes up with showing how wrong they think I am –
      over driven,
      power crazed,
      inspired zealots,
      professional – they went to SCHOOL to be professional
      They get DEGREES in MASS MANIPULATION and make YOU pay them for having it for the REST of their lives.
      They get better deals,
      They get better jobs,
      They get better retirements,
      They get better lives,
      and they go to government schools,
      to do that.
      WHO do you think, those government schools, FAVOR?
      Independent business? With their kids coming in and humiliating experts at every turn, because they’re PAPER
      Have you guys heard of that before, he’s a ”PAPER EXPERT?” It’s ALL on PAPER
      Paper printed
      by a government organization
      so people can go work at
      governing people so they can make better
      So it’s a serious, serious thing, and the reason, you need term limits.
      The odds are way, WAY too stacked when PROFESSIONAL MANIPULATORS
      are floating along then lodging like tumble weeds at the POWER CONTROLS of entire civilizations.
      ought to govern down to all the college graduates who have some leadership, and want to.
      It’s a fake government.
      Picking fake winners,
      using fake media,
      by fake
      political parties,
      pretending they’re different. They are, but it’s like the difference between Cobras and Rattlesnakes.

    • Dear Andy G55: Trump has a bankster cabinet. And where is the mj decriminalization? So long as local cops and the CIA can run drugs … no everyday, working American is benefitted. Eliminate bad cops – you know, those who are responsible for million dollar lawsuits and settlements that only take money from local government and everyday working Americans.

  2. Today, in most nations, coal is either the centerpiece or a major component of our electrical grids. Typically 40% to 90% of power from grids around the world come from coal. To work to undermine coal is to work to undermine the power grid. That is suicidal.
    Here’s a comment from Wes George on the Jonova blog:

    “Imagine the total civil breakdown that would ensue if the electric grid failed for an extended period in Sydney or London…It’s worth noting that if a major city lost all electric supply in 1950, it wouldn’t have been catastrophic… Then ask yourself — why do we tolerate those in our polity who are working to weaken our already over-extended energy generating and delivery systems?”

    • Just think of all the emergency systems that rely on electricity, such as mobile/social networks? The SES here in Australia rely on social networks like twitter and facebook to alert people to safety issues with storms and fire. Imagine trying to do that without technology and reliable power?

      • I wonder who will buy the coal? It’s tragic that the miners were not retrained for skills in new technologies. As it is they have been returned to a 19th century industry. I really feel for them knowing they are being fooled and there is no long term future in the coal industry.

      • Gareth: Contrary to your belief, there is a market for coal. The problem right now is getting permission from the eco-tivists to get the coal out of the US and to the countries using it. Washington state has been a detriment to this process. My vote is we simply deny Washington any and all coal fired electricity from any source. Let them live or die by it. Currently, the US still has 33 to 40% coal fired power plants. China is near 70% and China uses a lot of energy. Countries are building new plants daily. You seriously believe Soros bought coal stock because it’s going out of business?

      • Sheri,
        The problem with Washington State is they get nearly 100% of their power from hydroelectric dams. For them this is all virtue signalling. It has no effect on them whatsoever.

    • Coal is a declining part of grids in western Europe….
      UK, Netherlands, France all have dates for eliminating it entirely.
      Germany will actually close a few plants by 2019 and most by 2050.
      Nobody is building coal plants in western Europe any more…
      Last deep mined coal in Germany ends this year, if I recall correctly.

      • I guess people only want to work and enjoy life when the wind blows and/or the sun shines. For the rest of the time, there’s that damp, dark cave.

    • Allowing a political segment to deliberately put us at hazard is Idiocracy. You just simply have to say NO! We will not comply. At this point we have to defend ourselves and our society with whatever means are necessary…with the ultimate instrument the Second Amendment.

  3. Great news for ordinary working folk and electricity consumers. “Progressives” have truly lost the plot on how to improve the lot of humanity. Groups like Greenpeace are so off the beam that you have to wonder whether their leadership have been collectively lobotomised.

  4. How about a resolution to protect our national bird and other birds of prey by banning the operation of wind turbines during the daylight hours or the hours when bats are flocking?

  5. Trump is my man.
    I just watched a video by Steven Molyneux titled “Why I Changed My Mind on Climate Change”

    He approaches the subject from a different slant than I ever thought of but none the less valid in my view.
    It is worth a viewing and discusses the corruptibility of humans including scientists and politicians.
    I feel that Donald Trump is the nearest thing to a incorruptable politician not the least because of his wealth.
    Anyway I feel this video is relevant to this post and I hope other commenters will agree.

  6. Here is the irl of the video without the imbedding. Just do not forget to remove the quotes.
    I hope this works.

  7. If you believe that the burning of coal and or other fossil fuels are bad for the planet then stop making use of all goods and services that involve the use of such fossil fuels. If your home is connected to a power grid that involves the use of fossil fuels then turn off the main breaker and leave it off. It is your money that funds the fossil fuel companies. Without any demand the fossil fuel companies will stop supplying fossil fuels. It is all up to you.

    • You would also need to stop using anything made from steel, concrete, certain fertilisers, plastics, and probably glass, bitumen, and any transported goods…

      • That’s right. Transported goods unless it was transported by man or animal covers almost everything. You need to live on an off grid subsistance farm that was developed from the wilderness entirely by manual labor and without the use of manufactured tools or materials.

      • You would also have to start travelling on unpaved (asphalted) roads and stop covering your roof with (asphalt-based) shingles.

      • Absolutely – and all the above causes and effects are what convinced me – years ago – that all the ‘do-gooders’ who say we should stop this or that are really after a roll back of our civilization to the middle 1800s. Farmers and their sons out in the field cutting hay with a hand scythe, going to market on a horse and wagon, burning whale oil lamps for light in the evening, etc etc. The world cannot possibly produce enough food to feed even one-tenth of its existing population without fossil energy as used today. In effect they are requiring the death of 90% of the world population. Death by starvation!

  8. Interesting article in American Thinker on CERN and their recent research on Svensmark’s theories on the sun and cosmic rays determining climate.
    “CERN, the world’s top particle physics laboratory, just found that our big, abrupt climate changes are produced by variations in the sun’s activity. That’s the same sun the modelers had dismissed as “unchanging.” CERN says the sun’s variations interact with cosmic rays to create more or fewer of earth’s heat-shielding clouds. The IPCC had long admitted it couldn’t model clouds–and now the CERN experiment says the clouds are the earth’s thermostats!”
    Read on here http://www.americanthinker.com/articles/2017/02/democrats_real_global_warming_fraud_revealed.html
    Something for Willis Eschenbach to comment on as it fits in with his theory of clouds being the earth’s thermostat, but perhaps more Soon and the sun’s effect on Earth.

    • CERN, the world’s top particle physics laboratory, just found that our big, abrupt climate changes are produced by variations in the sun’s activity.
      When I see someone with such a heave political axe to grind making claims about what CERN have “found” without actually linking the source of such claims I get suspicious.
      Now, CERN has unraveled the earth’s cloud chemistry–and confirmed Svensmark’s theory–with their Large Hadron Collider producing the “cosmic rays.”
      The LHC is not the only accelerator at CERN and I’m fairly sure that it is not the source of the “cosmic” rays used in the experiment. GIVE ME a LINK.

  9. Either thay were thinking that no-one would DARE to overturn what they had done, or, more likely, they weren’t thinking at all.

  10. Are there environmental issues which apply specifically to mining coal? Which would not apply to mining anything else…

    • Mountain top mining sends debris into the valley where it MIGHT get into streams. I would imagine the same thins applies to those mountain top turbines, but no one cared about that.

      • It is also obvious the ALL mountain tops eventually send debris into the valleys where they most surely get into streams. The correct question is “so what?”

    • Coal (“soft”) is usual found in layers of sedimentary rocks, with anthracite being a metamorphosed type of coal. Therefore the “overburden” gets disturbed while mining “soft” coal and whatever chemicals are therein, such as sulfur and iron, can entire the landscape. Underground water can also be disturbed. So, the issue becomes what gets done to prevent problems. Many years ago these chemicals were allowed to get into streams and rivers. Much has changed since I lived in coal country, so I won’t even try to comment further.
      Oil sands processing produce Sulfur, as here:
      Massive amounts of Sulfur, stored for further use.
      In contrast, other types of mining, say for Zinc, Lead, Gold and others, come from different sorts of rocks and the measures to prevent environmental damage are different.
      The “rare earths” (not really rare) have been a recent source of problems for countries that are not rich enough or politically capable of controlling the mining thereof. See this story:
      mined at Bayan Obo

    • Or Jeb Bush, which would have been pretty much the same thing.
      The election was supposed to be in the bag, and lead America to permanent left-wing utopia. And they would have got away with it too, if not for that pesky billionaire.

    • China’s use of coal changed my mind – why should we tie our feet together while trying to race against them!

  11. The other part of the Obama legacy are the thousands of monuments to big green’s greed and hatred of the environment. The wind turbines that turn formerly open spaces into industrial parks, kill birds and hurt consumers are Obama’s blight in America. It will take years to dismantle these terrible useless wastes of money.l

    • No further spending on anything other than research on non-fossil non-hydro fuel energy unless it can work at the same BTU/kw as what we have in gas/oil/coal/hydro and at the same footprint. Else we destroy the very natural environment these alternative forms of energy were meant to protect. Watermelon thought isn’t well thought out.

      • I agree up to a point. Watermelons aren’t thinking about the environment, they are thinking about control – or at least the ones directing the movement. The shock troops might well think they are doing something heroic, but then they aren’t the brightest bulbs in the pack and they don’t think for themselves, not being raised to it.

  12. ““If you want to help miners, then come address their health and safety and their pension program,” Sen. Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.), the ranking member of the Energy and Natural Resources Committee, said during floor debate on the measure. ”
    When exactly were the democrats going to start “helping the miners”? and how?

    • Maria is now the Minority Party “ranking member”. Maybe she will return to WA and give up the D.C. life style.
      The Left Coast State of Washington’s major contribution to energy is hydro. Some parts have lots of wind towers and now folks are fighting over the placement of solar fields and marijuana. The last doesn’t require other people’s money.

    • “You can protect the coal industry here with special interests and the amount of lobbying they do, or you can step up in a process and have a regulation that works for the United States of America so the outdoor industry and sportsman and fishermen can continue to thrive.” (from The Hill)
      I live in Wyoming and we have plenty of “outdoor industry, sportsman and fishermen” along with coal mines. I have no idea what this person is talking about.

      • I worked in the coal industry (engineering strip mines in Montana and Wyoming back in the 80’s) when our company-employed environmentalists demonstrated convincingly to the DEQ that they could take old strip mines and reclaim them into lakes for fishing, duck hunting and water skiing, while the waste piles supported lush trees and brush that were excellent habitat for big game and birds.
        It turned the prairie into a much different landscape.
        This approach was STRONGLY supported by the locals who liked to water ski, fish, hunt, picnic, hike, camp, cross-country ski, and enjoy their outdoor surroundings.
        It caused the insular environmentalist’s heads to explode, as you can imagine.
        So once again, the Hill has it all wrong.

  13. I’ve seen other interviews with Robert Murray on TV. A very passionate man who knows his stuff. “Must see TV” for sure.

  14. When I worked on a Coal-To-Liquids technology in the 2002 to 20013 time frame, Barry O was a supporter of coal and helped pass a bill in congress to foster the CTL industry. Here is one reference to that position:
    So like many two-faced politicians, when it became politically expedient, he changed his view and became the most anti-energy tyrant this country has known.
    This change in position forced the company I worked for to find another feedstock source which only left biomass. Years of engineering were spent on finding a way to convert a low energy feed into a high energy fuel product. But there simply isn’t enough energy in biomass to convert into a worthwhile product. At least without massive subsidies from the government. Simple woody biomass has about 6000 Btu/lb whereas coal has 10,500 to 12,000 Btu/lb. Yet countries like Great Britain have forced energy companies to switch from local coal to wood pellets produced across an ocean at great cost. Upwards of $200/ton for pellets when coal was much cheaper and had nearly twice the energy content.
    In the US, DOE supported and still supports Biomass to liquids project that would collect forest residue and trees at $80/ton and convert them to a barrel of hydrocarbon fuel worth $60/bbl/ (roughly 1 ton of biomass makes 1 barrel of hydrocarbon fuel). Capital costs and production costs more than double the total cost of production, so there is no way this technology can become economically viable until crude hits $120/bbl or higher.
    But the other side of this story is worse. These BTL plants are relatively small producing maybe 2000 bbl/day. But they require a minimum of 4000 tons/day of feedstock. Switchgrass is a favored feed of the bioenergy crowd. But an acre of land produces only 10 tons of switchgrass per year. 730,000 tons/yr of biomass are needed to keep the plant running so storage of this amount is needed. Biomass rots and roughly 20% is lost to rot in a year. Roughly 20% of land area is not productive due to homes, businesses and roads, so that has to be taken into account. Therefore roughly 1.14 million acres are needed to support a 2000 bbl/day BTL plant. This is nearly 25 miles in radius of land devoted to one crop with no accounting for lost crop yield due to weather, fire (a reality as DuPont found out, See: http://www.amestrib.com/news/20160818/lightning-strikes-another-dupont-stover-site-starting-fire), drought, insects, and other natural causes. So in order to save the plant and produce renewable fuel, the Greens want a monoculture of energy crops that will ruin the environment. Go figure. Doesn’t anyone think these issues through?
    Much like Elon Musk wants to use all the lithium in the world for car batteries and storage devices without a thought of what this will do to the lithium market. Many other users of lithium will be forces to use other resources if Musk builds his cars and storage batteries. Think lithium grease used in all transportation and industries for one.
    The environmental movement will be the death of the planet.

    • You need to write that up into a post for WUWT, Bob. Complete with a few graphics to show the idiot economics, enormous land area commitments, and the technical flow. It would be a valuable contribution.

    • Fire in a corn stover storage site for a cellulosic ethanol plant in Iowa.
      Smoke producing stover fire might have to burn for weeks and thought to have been started by lightning. And not the first time there was a stover fire.
      Maybe the wind turbines in this fire photo had something to with attracting lightning to this site? Research being done on why stover seems to attract lightning.

  15. My family used to be coal miners and having spent a lot of time around coal mines in my youth I don’t think dumping more spoil in streambeds is such a great idea.
    anyway, I can’t see this materially reducing operating costs or doing anything at all to stop the main problem for US coal – cheap shale gas.
    US isn’t building new coal power and won’t.
    It is putting in a lot of solar panels – 14 GW capacity last year.

  16. The left doesn’t realize it but Trump is the very best thing that’s happened for them in years. With all their bleating about Nature you’d think they’d know it. But, then again, a destructive parasite probably can’t know it. The successful parasite doesn’t kill its host. The destructive parasite does. What the left doesn’t realize is that another 4-8 years of Obama’s policies, re enacted in a porky pantsuit, would’ve finally destroyed the host (i.e. the working class) of who’s blood the left sucks. Then the parasitical left, and all their cushy $300-$500K university administrating, NGO directoring, environmental law firm partnering, lobbyist grouping, bureaucraticing, corporate rent seeking, and other grotesquely well monied but otherwise useless positions would go the way of other starving parasites. Trump is nourishing their host. Somebody’s got to do it, or the whole party’d be over.

    • Hey ya know, everybody’s gotta be somethin’ Robert from oz. I also have friends who are serial killers, and molesters.
      I’m not offended by those uninformed hypocrite melon-heads, they’re all over my personal world, and in my culture.
      Of course..
      I’m a prison guard.

      • A prison guard for melon-heads?
        Well then, let us hope neither you nor Robert are judged by the cortex of your associates, but by the context of your characterizations.

  17. MRM is happening in many places. People drive by many MRM sites and have absolutely no idea – except for the envirowhackos who have been pointed at them.
    Now, think about the foot print and pollution of City Dwellers – New York, London, Los Angeles, Cairo, Bejing, and on and on and on.
    The mining of coal and oil sands is minor compared to what the masses of humans in their cities do. Just think about it green viewer. Now add to that, the area under agriculture and its impact. Humans have an impact. Someday we might even be able to measure it. But were it not for the sun, we, along with coal and oil, wouldn’t be here.
    Mining a little coal is minor (pun intended).

    • Wayne, these days many people drive by a lot of terrain without observing more than the pavement in front of them. Does that make them pertinent observers?
      I see a difference between expansion of high-density cities and the destruction of relatively-pristine terrain of which even city dwellers appreciate the continued existence. 70 years ago I traversed the Blue Ridge Mountains on winding narrow roads. In the valleys below I saw seemingly endless trains of coal. Tiny towns saddled clear creeks. I see no compelling reason to destroy that environment.
      You and Robert apparently failed to do any research on Robert Murray, who claims he does not favor surface mining of coal in Appalachia. Murray’s operations in Appalachia are below ground. So, since it’s clearly not Murray Energy, who do you represent in this debate?

  18. Let’s see if we have a lot of fish kill as a result of this bill. Murray must realized that those jobs are history and the are not coming back. I am just keeping it real.

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