Barrasso Leads Bicameral Group in Demanding the Renewal of the National Coal Council

October 12, 2021

The National Coal Council plays a major role in ensuring America remains a leader in advancing coal and carbon related technologies. 

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Today, U.S. Senator John Barrasso (R-WY), ranking member of the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources (ENR), led a group of U.S. Senators and U.S. Representatives calling on Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm to renew the National Coal Council (NCC). 

In the letter, the group highlights the importance of the NCC in advancing coal policy, technology, and markets. The NCC plays a major role in new coal production for environmentally responsible uses including energy production and innovative new carbon products and materials. 

Along with Ranking Member Barrasso, the letter was signed by Sens. Mike Braun (R-IN), Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV), Kevin Cramer (R-ND), Steve Daines (R-MT), John Hoeven (R-ND), James Lankford (R-OK), Cynthia Lummis (R-WY), Mitt Romney (R-UT), Todd Young (R-IN), and Reps. David McKinley (R-WV), Bruce Westerman (R-AR), Kelly Armstrong (R-ND), Mike Bost (R-IL), Larry Bucshon (R-IN), Liz Cheney (R-WY), Tom Cole (R-OK), John Curtis (R-UT), Morgan Griffith (R-VA), Bill Johnson (R-OH), John Joyce (R-PA), Doug Lamborn (R-CO), Mike Kelly (R-PA), Carol Miller (R-WV), Alex Mooney (R-WV), Greg Pence (R-IN), and Guy Reschenthaler (R-PA). 

Read the full letter here and below. 

Secretary Granholm: 

We write in support of renewal of the National Coal Council’s (NCC) charter, which must be renewed by November 20, 2021. The NCC is a Federal Advisory Committee (FAC) that provides valuable recommendations and insights to your office on coal policies and technologies. The NCC is a talented and multifaceted organization of coal producers and consumers, carbon researchers, academics, environmentalists, and policy experts.  It is our understanding that the Office of Fossil Energy and Carbon Management has proposed to decline to recharter the NCC. 

FACs formally advise the executive branch, but their reports are read and relied upon more widely. We are grateful to the NCC for the analysis, research, and policy recommendations it provides. The NCC publishes reports on a variety of coal and carbon ore-related subjects to the Secretary. Comprised of nearly 125 members, the NCC is essential to advising the Department and other stakeholders on policy opportunities for coal. Over the last four decades, the NCC has been an excellent resource for lawmakers, helping to inform our approach to energy and manufacturing policy. 

As global coal consumption is projected to increase, it is essential that the United States remains a leader in advancing coal and carbon related technologies. National Economic Council Director Brian Deese recently said, "The global nature of climate change also provides an opportunity for U.S. industry to help others meet their climate targets. We were once the arsenal of democracy for the world during World War II. We can again be an arsenal for the world dealing with climate change."[1] 

The NCC provides the Department with the tools and information it needs to ensure America’s carbon management technologies are cutting edge and are deployed around the world. America’s leadership in advancing coal and carbon-management technologies will have a profound impact on meeting global climate targets, while allowing emerging economies access to reliable, affordable energy. 

Denying newly mined coal a position in the domestic energy and manufacturing mix will come at a serious cost, both here at home and around the world. A politically driven rejection of understanding the benefits of newly mined coal and carbon research today kill thousands of jobs and innovation. It will leave our children and children around the world without the tools they need to both meet electricity demand and manage carbon. 

We strongly encourage you to renew the charter before November or reconstitute the NCC with the same aims of advancing coal policy, technology, and markets, including for new coal production for environmentally responsible uses including energy production and innovative new carbon products and materials.