Manchin seeks public comment on EPA rules

PARKERSBURG – A senator from West Virginia is asking residents to comment on the proposed carbon dioxide emission rules from the Environmental Protection Agency impacting existing power plants fueled by coal.

The EPA has proposed carbon dioxide emissions from existing power plants be cut 30 percent by 2030. States have a year after the rule is final to come up with a plan to meet the emission standards and the EPA could determine if the plan will work. In that event, the agency would develop a plan for the state.

Comments on the Clean Power Plan Proposed Rule can be placed on the Federal Register through Oct. 16, Sen. Joe Manchin said.

Reference the Docket ID: EPA-HQ-OAR-2013-0602 and place comments using one of the following methods:

* Federal eRulemaking portal: Follow the online instructions for submitting comments.

* Email A-and-R-Docket@epa.gov: Include docket ID No. EPA-HQ-OAR-2013-0602 in the subject line of the message.

* Fax comments to: 202-566-9744.

* Mail comments to Environmental Protection Agency, EPA Docket Center (EPA/DC), Mailcode 28221T, Attention Docket ID No. OAR2013-0602, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave., NW., Washington, D.C. 20460.

* Hand Delivery or courier to EPA Docket Center, Room 3334, 1301 Constitution Ave., NW, Washington, D.C 20460.

The Federal Register is a portal where Americans can comment before any federal government agency’s proposed rule can be implemented.

“The EPA has proposed rules that are not based on any existing technology that has been proven on a commercial scale,” Manchin said.

In other congressional news, Rep. David McKinley, R-W.Va., said funding for energy research at the National Energy Technology Laboratory in Morgantown remained intact despite amendments to House Resolution 4923, the Fiscal Year 2015 Energy and Water Appropriations Act, to cut fossil fuel research.

“Opponents of fossil energy have been emboldened by President Obama and are trying to do away with vital investments in research on coal, oil, and gas,” McKinley said.

The House passed the resolution 253-170. Rep. Shelley Moore Capito, R-W.Va., also voted for the legislation.

“This bill not only rejects the administration’s proposed 15 percent cut to fossil energy research but sends a clear message: Coal is, will be, and must be an important part of a national all-of-the-above energy strategy,” Capito said.

McKinley also offered an amendment to the bill to maintain the lab as a public-private partnership as it currently operates in response to efforts to change the structure of the agency and move it out of Morgantown.

“Now that the House has voted to maintain this important research, the Senate needs to do the same,” he said.

McKinley also introduced a resolution condemning the recent murders of Israeli and Palestinian teenagers and the escalating violence prompted by Hamas rocket attacks.

Earlier this month, three Israeli teenagers, one of whom was also an American citizen, were kidnapped and murdered by terrorists associated with Hamas. Extremists retaliated by murdering a Palestinian teenager, McKinley said

“Violence against innocent children and civilians is abhorrent and Congress needs to speak up,” McKinley said.

At 12:15 p.m. Monday at the Culture Center in Charleston, Manchin, Sen. Jay Rockefeller and Rep. Nick Rahall of West Virginia will participate in the Real West Virginia Foundation’s West Virginia Transportation and Infrastructure Summit about the future needs of the aviation and transportation infrastructure.