Democratic News

Building on the success of last week’s natural gas conference , Senate Energy Committee has scheduled a similar session to examine coal-related topics. Bipartisan planning for this March 10 conference is well under way. As before, the half-day meeting will be open to the public and the press. Here are details: Domenici, Bingaman Announce March Coal Conference, Issue Broad Call for Innovative Solutions to Coal Challenges Washington, D.C. – Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee Chairman Pete V. Domenici and ranking Senator Jeff Bingaman today issued a broad call for proposals to address the challenge of developing and using coal in an environmentally-friendly manner to help meet growing U.S. demand for electricity. As they did in December on the topic of natural gas, Senators Domenici and Bingaman invite industry, government, public interest groups and private citizens to submit written proposals to the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee. The proposals may address any or all of the challenges surrounding coal production and use. To be considered, the proposals must be received electronically by close of business on February 14. The proposals will be reviewed by committee staff and the most promising ideas will be discussed at a half-day conference scheduled for March 10. The committee hosted a half-day natural gas conference on January 24. The conference provided an excellent forum for vetting and discussing nearly 30 proposals for addressing most aspects of the United States’ natural gas challenges. The conference drew widespread participation and attendance from government, academia, the public, the natural gas industry and business. Coal provides more than half of all electricity in the country. But a number of issues surround the continued use of coal, including the environmental impact of various mining techniques, the cost of new clean coal combustion technologies, rising transportation costs and concerns over emissions of sulfur dioxide, oxides of nitrogen, mercury and carbon dioxide. As with the natural gas proposals, the best and most feasible coal proposals may be included in future energy legislation in the Senate. Later this week the committee will issue guidelines for the written proposals, which can include proposed legislative language. Staff contacts for the conference are J. W. Peschke and Jennifer Michael. Electronic inquiries should be sent to Coal_Conference@Energy.Senate.Gov.

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