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Thumbs down: EPA appointment bad news for region

Mar. 05, 2013 @ 10:50 PM

Both Republicans and Democrats from the coal producing regions of the United States have urged President Obama to consider jobs and the economy as he presses for environmental protection.

But it is very clear that he is not listening.

Monday, the president appointed Gina McCarthy as the new head of the Environmental Protection Agency, and we should expect more of the same anti-coal regulatory climate that has marked the past four years.

McCarthy is the ultimate EPA insider, who has headed the air pollution division since 2009 and implemented many of the regulations designed to make coal-fired power plants a thing of the past. Those policies not only have hurt employment in our region, but they are driving up energy costs for both consumers and business in America.

Environmental extremists applauded McCarthy's nomination, but local lawmakers were quick to say the president had missed an opportunity to appoint someone who would balance environmental regulations with the realities of the Appalachian economy.

"It is a shame the president continues to put his extreme partisan agenda ahead of jobs and energy security in West Virginia and across the country." said U.S. Rep. Shelley Moore Capito, R-W.Va.

McCarthy's nomination now goes to the U.S. Senate for confirmation, and we urge our representatives from West Virginia, Kentucky and Ohio to vote no.

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