Is the United Mine Workers of America (UMWA) representing mine workers at all? West Virginia needs a Right to Work Law so that the remaining working miners can stop being forced to support these anti-coal mining union bosses. (And, Obama’s pal and former President of the United Mine Workers of America Dick Trumka has been of no help to working miners.)
The UMWA can expect more of the same anti-coal agenda if the Senate remains under Democrat control since climate change remains high on Obama’s priority list. The New York Times recently reported Obama will seek an international agreement on climate change next year.
Consequently, the best and only chance the coal industry has to survive is for Congress to control the EPA via the appropriations process.
The UMWA should be leading the charge to get the Senate in Republican hands, but it looks like the union leadership is choosing politics over its membership.
Using data from energy research firm SNL Energy, Morris Beschloss wrote in The Desert Sun that the coal industry lost just over 17,000 jobs since 2011 with 84% of those jobs being lost in Appalachian states including Kentucky and West Virginia. He added, “Boone County, West Virginia saw its average coal mine employment during the period drop by 1,838 employees, to 2,682 from 4,520, a decline of nearly 41% since the fourth quarter of 2011.”
The news for coal miners remains bleak and it can get worse. Alpa Natural Resources recently announced it might lay off 1,100 miners at 11 mines in West Virginia this fall and according to Greenwire, EPA estimated that its proposed rule for greenhouse gases for existing power plants coal production would fall as much as 27% percent in 2020 and under one scenario up to 14,000 coal miner job losses by 2020. [read more at redstate.com]