Trump says he ended the ‘war’ on coal companies. But it’s too late to save them. – by Adam Federman (Washington Post – October 13, 2017)

It was depicted by energy executives and conservatives as a “witch hunt,” “a politically motivated sham” and a move that would “destroy mining in the West .”

In January 2016, President Barack Obama imposed a three-year moratorium on federal coal leasing, which halted new projects and delayed pending applications for companies to extract coal from federal land. During that time, the Interior Department was to carry out an overdue review of the program’s social and environmental costs.

A year later, all this was an easy target for President Trump, who had promised to save the coal industry from oppressive regulations and slumping sales. On March 29, his administration lifted the moratorium and deep-sixed the study.

In his speech at Environmental Protection Agency headquarters announcing the reversal of other measures designed to make life easier for the industry, the president said he was “putting an end to the war on coal.”

Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke argued that the leasing program was critical to “energy security” and “job creation.” EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt followed that by moving this past week to repeal Obama’s Clean Power Plan, designed to limit carbon emissions.

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