As discussed yesterday, given a second term for those at the Environmental Protection Agency who feel perfectly justified in picking winners and losers in America’s energy markets, states like Kentucky are scrambling to find powerful tools to protect their energy sectors.
At the American Legislative Exchange Council’s task force on energy and the environment, the Bluegrass Institute succeeded in passing this new and powerful tool to battle the overzealous regulators at the Environmental Protection Agency, and any others who would attempt to stifle Kentucky’s energy sector by trampling on the rights provided to the states in the U.S. Constitution.
The Intrastate Coal and Use Act is a piece of model legislation which declares in no uncertain terms that any coal mined, sold and used exclusively within the borders of a state are to be regulated exclusively by the state itself – not mid-Atlantic bureaucrats who too often have neither the will nor local knowledge to effectively weigh the benefits and costs of a natural resource as valuable as coal. This is exactly what the American founders had in mind before the “interstate commerce clause” was used and abused by modern-day regulators.
Since one-third of all Kentucky coal remains within the borders of the Commonwealth, such a bill will prove extremely useful in protecting state sovereignty over Kentucky’s energy sector. The “black rock” provides Kentucky with 93% of its electricity needs and some of the cheapest energy rates in the nation.
This piece of legislation – sponsored by the Bluegrass Institute – finally provides Kentuckians with a bazooka in the battle for constrained and reasonable government. But it need not be the only weapon. We’ll continue to explore more options in future blogs.