The Obama/Brown War on Coal still killing Ohio jobs

Regular readers of this blog are familiar with how the extreme environmental policies of the Obama Administration are killing coal jobs in Ohio. Not only does Southeast Ohio’s economy rely on a significant coal industry, but as a state, Ohio depends on coal for 82% of its electricity.

By voting to keep “Utility MACT”, extreme left-wing Ohio Senator Sherrod Brown has wholeheartedly lined up next to Obama in his attack. Although he constantly attempts to paint himself as a friend to the coal industry, Ohioans and coal miners know better:

President Obama’s bullying regulatory measures, such as the Environmental Protection Agency’s new Utility MACT rule, which Senator Brown supported, while other Democrats from coal states like Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) did not, will have a direct impact on coal and coal-fired power plants in Ohio and other states. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce called the rule one of the most expensive in U.S. history because of the excessive burden it places on power plants.

Even the United Mine Workers of America, a self-described “very Democratic union”, has refused to endorse Obama for reelection.

So far, the damage has been mostly inflicted directly on the coal industry itself, through mining layoffs and power plant closures.

Not anymore. It’s now costing Ohio jobs in other industries. From the Cleveland Plain Dealer:

CLEVELAND, Ohio — CSX Corp., one of the nation’s largest rail companies, is cutting 33 jobs from its light diesel locomotive repair shop in Collinwood in response to what it calls “reduced volume of train traffic in certain lines of business.”

These certain other lines of business that are suffering are related to the transport of coal.

According to an October research report on CSX for the NYSE written by Trefis, coal freight constitutes 26% of CSX’s stock price. However, the report states that the Utility Coal sector of their business to be challenged “well into 2013” due to current low natural gas prices and impending environmental regulation. In fact, they are currently forecasting a 25% year over year decline in volume for the fourth quarter of this year. As a result, they’ve also reduced their labor forecast for the remainder of 2012 and 2013. In addition, CSX’s own third quarter report details a 17% decline in revenue from their coal-related business, compared to last year.

Also announced in Ohio this week, were an additional 100 forthcoming layoffs at the Sands Mill Mining Company. According to the Vinton County Courier, the company quoted increased government regulation as a reason.

“These potential reductions are in response to the adverse conditions in the coal markets that we have experienced since late 2011 due to low natural gas prices and an extensive governmental regulatory environment.

It’s news like this that has more people in Ohio’s coal country soundly supporting Mitt Romney for President.

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Author: Nick

I was born and raised in Ohio. After growing up in the Columbus area, I moved to Cleveland to study at Case Western Reserve University, and have lived in Northeast Ohio ever since. I live in Wellington with my wife and son. I work in the private sector and have never worked in the political field.

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