Trump’s Coal Bailout Directive is a Multi-Billion Dollar Attack on American Families, Markets and the Law

EDF statement from Michael Panfil, Director of Federal Energy Policy and Senior Attorney

June 1, 2018
Erica Fick, (512) 691-3406,

(WASHINGTON, D.C.) President Trump today directed Secretary of Energy Rick Perry to take steps to bail out uneconomic coal and nuclear plants. The Defense Production Act and Section 202(c) of the Federal Power Act will likely form the basis of President Trump’s directive. However, these obscure laws are intended to protect national security and reserved for rare, isolated instances of emergency – not for bailing out power plants that can no longer compete in our nation’s electricity markets.

“Trump’s directive today seeks an unprecedented, illegal government handout and we look forward to forcefully opposing it every step of the way. Americans should not have to pay for dirty, uneconomic coal plants that pollute our environment and make people sick – especially when there are cleaner, more affordable energy options available.”

Trump’s directive today goes against a recent determination by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) that no resilience or reliability crisis exists, voluminous evidence from grid analysts that supports this finding and a statement by the regional grid operator, PJM, that “there is no immediate emergency.” Trump’s directive seeks to undermine the nation’s competitive power markets and aims to increase electricity bills by billions of dollars a year.

  • Michael Panfil, Director of Federal Energy Policy and Senior Attorney

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