Key Democrats Launch CoalBlue Project: Leading Democrats Form Coalition to Advance Sustainable Coal

Leading Democrats announce the formation of the CoalBlue Project, which will serve to promote the essential role of coal in America’s energy future.

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Key Democrats Launch CoalBlue Project
Leading Democrats form coalition to advance sustainable coal

WASHINGTON, D.C. — A group of leading Democrats announced today the formation of the CoalBlue Project,  which will serve to promote the essential role of coal in America’s energy future. CoalBlue Project seeks to foster a broad, bipartisan commitment to sustainable coal as a sustainable fuel for the 21st Century that will improve
environmental quality, promote economic growth, and provide greater energy security. CoalBlue Project will focus on identifying, organizing, educating, and mobilizing Americans in support of sustainable coal as part of a sensible,“all of the above” energy strategy.

“Affordable and reliable electricity, a growing economy, and a healthy environment are not mutually exclusive. We need not choose one over the others. By developing and deploying all of our nation’s abundant domestic energy resources, including coal, in a sustainable way, we can meet all three goals,” said former Illinois Congressman Jerry
Costello. “I am proud to have worked with my former House colleagues, John Tanner of Tennessee and Rick Boucher of Virginia, as well as former North Carolina Utilities Commission and National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners (NARUC) Chairman Jim Kerr, in launching the CoalBlue Project. We are appreciative of the
support so many Democratic officeholders across our nation are giving to this important effort to build consensus around coal as a sustainable energy resource for the future.”

“As Senators from energy-producing states, we are keenly aware that the prosperity of all Americans is tied directly to the sensible management and deployment of our abundant, domestic energy resources,” said Senators Joe Manchin (WV) and Heidi Heitkamp (ND). “We are proud to support the important and worthy mission of the
CoalBlue Project, and welcome CoalBlue as a valuable and necessary voice in the national conversation regarding our nation’s energy future.”

In addition to Rick Boucher, Jerry Costello, Jim Kerr and John Tanner, the CoalBlue Project’s leaders and advocates include current and former Democratic leaders in Congress, such as Congressman Nick J. Rahall (WV), Congressman Bill Enyart (IL), and former Congressman Tim Holden (PA), as well as a broad cross-section of state and local Democratic officeholders, including Kentucky House of Representatives Majority Leader Rocky Adkins, West Virginia State Senator Art Kirkendoll, North Dakota House of Representatives Minority Leader Kenton Onstad, Pennsylvania State Representative Pam Snyder, and Franklin County (IL) Treasurer John Gulley.

“As Democrats from states with proud traditions in the coal fields, we view the mission of the CoalBlue Project as essential within the broader context of national energy policy,” said Congressmen Nick Rahall (WV) and Bill Enyart (IL). “A viable energy future can only be achieved with clean coal. We applaud the CoalBlue Project’s recognition
of this very important fact and its efforts to bring more voices to the table in support of sustainable coal.”Democrats supporting sustainable coal for a sustainable world CoalBlue Project  1110 Vermont Avenue, NW, Suite 1000  Washington, DC 20005 As with other sustainable fuels, the successful development of clean coal will require significant public investment and broad public support, including support from both major political parties. CoalBlue Project seeks to establish a stronger, more visible, and more vocal base of support for sustainable coal both within the Democratic Party and with Americans of all political stripes.

“Through the development and application of technology, coal has met every environmental challenge it has ever faced. There is no reason to think that the carbon challenge is any different,” said former Wyoming Governor Dave Freudenthal. “The question is whether we have the will to do what’s necessary to get the job done. CoalBlue will help rally Democrats and all who want to address climate concerns around a realistic path to tackling the carbon challenge.”

CoalBlue Project will highlight the critical role coal must play in meeting the U.S. and global energy demand by:

  • Advocating within the Democratic Party for policies that recognize coal as an essential part of the transition to  cleaner fuels, are supportive of the development and deployment of clean coal technologies, and include  sustainable coal as an equal partner in the mix of future sustainable fuels;
  • Proactively engaging with political and policy stakeholders, and the American public, in support of policies that  include coal as a central part of a comprehensive energy strategy;
  • Working to educate and increase awareness among policy leaders and the public as to the importance of  sustainable coal and coal energy through communication, forums, and events;
  • Offering support and assistance for the Administration’s “clean energy” agenda, predicated on a common  understanding that a clean, low-carbon world cannot be achieved without clean, low-carbon coal;
  • Supporting and undertaking activities that bring together a range of stakeholders – Democrats, Republicans, Independents, NGOs, the media, opinion leaders, academics, policy “think tanks” and the American public – in  pursuit of new, innovative solutions to present and future economic, energy, environmental, and social challenges.