Mike Bloomberg Reignited The War On Coal. West Virginia Is Fighting Back
Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg pledged $500 million to kill the coal industry, and West Virginia, the second-largest coal-producing state, isn’t sitting idly by.
West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice, a Republican, railed against Bloomberg at a Monday press conference, alongside coal and natural gas industry leaders.
Justice called Bloomberg’s new climate change campaign a “bubble boy’s idea” that could bring West Virginia to its knees.
“We’ve just gone through the God-awfullest war on coal for the last eight years prior to President Trump and it almost killed us,” Justice said at the press conference.
“And we’re just crawling out of that terrible deal and, now, here we go again,” Justice said.
Bloomberg announced his massive spending plan Friday, which included funding aimed at closing every U.S. coal plant by 2030. Justice, a former coal and real-estate magnate, said he would stand against Bloomberg’s anti-coal push.
“We cannot afford this kind of attack on us,” Justice said. “This single-handedly destroys West Virginia — our great coal mining families, our great pipeline people, our great oil and gas people, everything.”
“His end goal is to extinguish fossil fuels,” Justice said. “And if that happens to us, we’re back in the dark ages.”
Justice’s press conference came after the United Mine Workers of America (UMWA) and West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin, a Democrat, also came out against Bloomberg’s “Beyond Carbon” campaign, which is billed as the largest coordinated U.S. campaign to combat global warming.
Bloomberg’s campaign will fund environmental activist lobbying state legislatures, city councils, and public utility commissions to replace coal plants with renewable energy, not natural gas.
With this new spending, Bloomberg will have committed roughly $1 billion to the climate crusade, including $150 million for Sierra Club efforts to close coal and natural gas plants.
The Sierra Club is expected to be a major beneficiary of Bloomberg’s new round of spending.
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