ACCCE President and CEO Robert “Mike” Duncan praised the lawmaker’s initiative in the face of ongoing Beltway hostility toward fossil fuels — both as a safe, inexpensive source of energy and an essential part of the Appalachian region’s economy.

“As it stands, the EPA’s so-called listening tour bypasses entirely the key states that rely heavily on coal-fueled generation and production,” Duncan said in a statement. “To add insult to injury, the states EPA will visit receive, on average, a mere 26% of their electricity from coal-fueled generation.”

Given the “profound” effects the regulations pose to “families, businesses and our nation’s energy future,” he added, “coal communities must have a seat at the table as EPA considers the path forward for the existing power fleet.”

To this end, Rep. Capito “continues to advocate for those who stand to lose the most, but whose voices are being excluded from this important conversation,” added Duncan.