Coal loses another battle, despite Trump for vanguard news .
Last week the Tennessee Valley Authority voted to close the 49-year-old Paradise Fossil Unit 3 coal-fired generating plant in western Kentucky, citing operating costs, the need for repairs and “flat to declining” load.
The board’s 5-2 vote came despite appeals from Trump to keep the plant and others like it open.
“Coal is an important part of our electricity generation mix and @TVAnews should give serious consideration to all factors before voting to close viable power plants, like Paradise #3 in Kentucky!” wrote Trump on Twitter in the days leading up to the vote.
Joining Trump in his calls to save the plant were Kentucky Sen. Mitch McConnell and the state’s governor, Matt Bevin, both Republicans. Both cited concerns for the surrounding community, including mines who count the facility as one of their primary buyers.
The unit that will be closed had a capacity of 1,150 megawatts. Two smaller units at the plant closed in 2017.
Complicating the Paradise plant closing is that its primary supplier of coal is a company owned by Robert Murray, a
major Republican donor and Trump supporter.
Murray Energy gave the Trump-supporting super-PAC America First Action $1 million in the last election cycle and Murray has personally lobbied the president to keep plants open, particularly in the areas where his company sells coal.
Murray told Politico that while he had responded to questions from members of Congress about the potential
devastating effects of the plant closing, he did not have anything to do with Trump’s tweet.
Trump campaigned on the promise of ending the “war on coal,” at one point donning a miner’s helmet at a rally in West Virginia. And he appointed Andrew Wheeler, a former coal lobbyist who has worked for Murray,