Donald Trump campaigned on a pledge to save the dirtiest of fossil fuels. And just over a year ago declared at a West Virginia rally, “We are back. The coal industry is back.”
But the reality is quite different, with more coal-fired power plant shutdowns under Trump in his first two years in office than in Obama’s entire first term!
So it’s no surprise that those who actually work in the industry disagree with Trump’s rosy outlook.
Cecil Roberts, United Mine Workers of America President, shut down all of Trump’s false bravado this week, explaining that the “harsh reality” is quite different from the president’s wild exaggerations:
Roberts says that all of Trump’s huffing and puffing amounts to nothing more than simply keeping the coal industry “in existence.” However, he points out that the industry as a whole is still shrinking and more and more jobs continue to be lost.
Indeed, Trump’s own Energy Information Administration (EIA) projects coal production will hit a four-decade low in 2019 and drop again in 2020
Roberts and other miners have begged Trump to give them some time and consideration, to discuss the issues that they are facing in the dying industry. Brandon Pearson, one of the protesting Blackjewel miners, says they need Trump on their side:
“We’re struggling, and I hope and I pray that Donald Trump can see my message and hear my voice. I’m just one of many voices crying out, saying we need help we need something and we need him here…. A tweet would be great.”