CONSOL Energy (NYSE: CNX) employees were joining coal supporters from multiple states on Oct. 29 to show their support for coal and what it means to the economy during an American Energy Jobs Rally in Washington, D.C.
Virginia-based CONSOL Energy employees and retirees boarded three Eastern Coal Council buses in far Southwest Virginia on Oct. 28 along with other coal company representatives, coal suppliers and supporters, to head across the state to attend the rally. Two busloads of CONSOL employees and members of Boilermakers Local 154 left from Pennsylvania the morning of Oct. 29 headed to the rally site where National Mining Association and Count on Coal officials estimated approximately 65 industry buses were expected to arrive carrying thousands of coal supporters.
“CONSOL Energy is pleased to be a part of the rally both through our sponsorship of buses headed to the rally and through our employees and retirees who volunteered their time to stand up for coal and what it means to our economy in the way of jobs and affordable, reliable electricity for millions of Americans,” said Cathy St. Clair, CONSOL Energy public affairs director, in an Oct 29 statement.
“It is our hope through this rally that we can focus attention on coal and its importance not only as a baseload energy provider, but also in its role as the backbone of the American economy,” St. Clair continued. “We hope that we can draw attention to the fact that the policies which come from Washington directly have an impact on the people who choose to work in the coal industry and their families whose jobs and livelihoods are now threatened by some of those policies.”
NMA said that more than 30 members of Congress have asked to speak at the rally to express their support for coal, the people who work in the industry and their understanding of the importance of coal to the nation’s economy.
Multiple Obama Administration policies, including air rules like the Mercury and Air Toxics Standards for coal-fired power plants, and other programs, like tighter water permitting for coal mines, have cut into current U.S. coal production and put the industry in danger of major job and market losses in coming years. Republican members of Congress have been particularly vocal about job losses from these rules.
CONSOL Energy is a Pittsburgh-based producer of coal and natural gas. It has 12 bituminous coal mining complexes in four states and reports proven and probable coal reserves of 4.2 billion tons.