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Jeremy Richardson

About the author: Jeremy Richardson is a senior energy analyst in the Climate and Energy program, conducting analytical work on the Environmental Protection Agency’s carbon regulations. Prior to this position, Dr. Richardson was a Kendall Science Fellow and researched the fundamental cultural and economic drivers of coal production in West Virginia. He has a Ph.D. and M.S. in physics from the University of Colorado at Boulder. Subscribe to Jeremy's posts

Heads in the Sand: Koch Brothers Push States to Avoid Carbon Rules

The Environmental Protection Agency is poised to limit carbon pollution from existing power plants, following President Obama’s Climate Action Plan announced last summer. The states will have a leadership role in designing plans to achieve the reductions in the most cost-effective way. Read More

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The Economic Impacts of Future Coal Production in West Virginia

Last month colleagues and I published a paper in the journal Environmental Research Letters, focusing on the economic impacts of future coal production on West Virginia. Using scenarios for projected coal production published by the Energy Information Administration in its Annual Energy Outlook, we set out to understand how these projections might impact the economy of West Virginia, the second largest coal-producing state in the United States. Read More

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West Virginia’s Future Fund One Step Closer to Reality

The West Virginia Senate today unanimously passed a bill to establish the West Virginia Future Fund. SB 461 now moves to the House of Delegates for consideration. This fund represents an important step toward a brighter economic future for West Virginia. The House should also vote yes. Read More

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West Virginia’s Chemical Spill: The Cost of Coal Isn’t Cheap

My parents live only a couple miles upstream of the site of last month’s West Virginia chemical spill. Like many other local residents, they continue to drink bottled water amid ongoing confusion and uncertainty about the safety of the area’s water supply. Some people in the region have even resorted to melting snow to bathe their kids. Read More

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The Hidden Costs of “Cheap” Electricity in West Virginia

Today, residents of nine West Virginia counties—including my parents—are without water because of a spill from a chemical storage container near a water treatment plant on the Elk River in Charleston. The spill affected some 200,000 people, who were advised to avoid using their tap water for drinking, cooking, cleaning, even bathing. Read More

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Beyond Coal and Natural Gas: What’s the Way Forward for West Virginia?

Last evening West Virginia Governor Earl Ray Tomblin gave his annual State of the State address (transcript) to a joint session of the state legislature. His focus on investing in the future of the Mountain State was very encouraging, but he missed an opportunity to go further. Read More

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West Virginia Looks to the Future

What does a clean energy future look like in Coal Country, and what options exist for diversifying the economy? West Virginia leaders gathered back in September to discuss just these questions, and UCS has just released a new report summarizing their conversations. Read More

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Surprisingly, West Virginians Support Raising Taxes on the Coal Industry–Even in Coal Country

What a week. President Obama delivered a major speech on climate change on Tuesday, directing the Environmental Protection Agency to carry out its obligations under existing law and limit carbon emissions from both new and existing power plants.

As a scientist studying climate change, I’m excited by the President’s leadership. He articulated the reality of the problem that we face, and why it’s so important that we act today to prepare for climate change that’s already locked in and protect future generations by cutting emissions. Read More

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Patriot Coal: Broken Promises

It isn’t often that prominent environmental leaders and coal miners find themselves on the same side of an argument. But that’s exactly what happened in the case of now-bankrupt Patriot Coal Company. Read More

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Playing a Shell Game with a Power Plant: Ratepayers Lose

Ever wonder how your utility company sets your electricity price? Most of us don’t think much about our electric bills; we just pay them and figure there isn’t much we can do about it if the rates increase. However, once in a while there’s an opportunity for ordinary citizens to speak up and make their voices heard. At the moment, that’s especially true if you get electricity from Mon Power or Potomac Edison, which together serve a large part of West Virginia. Read More

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