Energy: Kudos to McKinley for coal tax credit

America’s coal industry, along with our affordable electricity infrastructure, were left in a shambles after an eight-year, no-holds-barred assault. The rebuilding and diversification process will require similar focus, effort and time. No single initiative will accomplish it.

U.S. Rep. David McKinley and like-minded lawmakers understand that.

McKinley, R-W.Va., is being given credit for much of the initiative that resulted in funding for a key program being included in the two-year budget agreement in Congress. It is the 45Q tax credit, aimed at developing and deploying carbon capture technology. That is crucial if coal-fired power plants are to meet limits meant to curb climate change.

Also due kudos is U.S. Rep. Michael Conaway, R-Texas, who worked hard for the 45Q funding.

They and others who understand the critical importance of a vibrant coal industry, and innovation, to the balanced energy policy our nation needs are to be commended — and encouraged to keep plugging away. Such endeavors coupled with the quest for an Appalachian Underground Natural Gas Storage Hub are key to fueling the revitalization of our own region as well.

Much remains to be done.