Up to 1,000 jobs at Bucyrus International Inc. and its suppliers could be in jeopardy as the result of a decision by the U.S. Export-Import Bank, funded by Congress, to deny several hundred million dollars in loan guarantees to a coal-fired power plant and mine in India.
About 300 of those jobs are at the Bucyrus plant in South Milwaukee, where the company has 1,410 employees and its headquarters. The remaining jobs are spread across 13 states, including Illinois, Minnesota and Indiana.
On Thursday, the Export-Import Bank denied financing for Reliance Power Ltd., an Indian power plant company, effectively wiping out about $600 million in coal mining equipment sales for Bucyrus, chief executive Tim Sullivan said.
The fossil fuel project was the first to come before the government-run bank since it adopted a climate-change policy to settle a lawsuit and to meet Obama administration directives.
“President Obama has made clear his administration’s commitment to transition away from high-carbon investments and toward a cleaner-energy future,” Export-Import Bank Chairman Fred Hochberg said in a statement. “After careful deliberation, the Export-Import Bank board voted not to proceed with this project because of the projected adverse environmental impact.”
Its important to note that this isnt even a coal plant in the U.S., but in India, so Obama’s efforts to stop coal really won’t accomplish anything. As Ed Morrissey chimes in, it will actually make it worse:
This decision won’t stop one carbon molecule from hitting the air. In fact, it will likely make carbon emissions worse. India will look for other vendors to supply the equipment, probably from neighboring Russia or China, as they will continue to build and operate the plant. Both nations compete in the same marketplace as Bucyrus, but they don’t work as cleanly as the American company does, which means the end result will be lower efficiency and more pollution.
Democrats like Obama keep talking about eeeeeevil corporations that export jobs overseas to save costs rather than keep them in the US. Well, Obama and his Congress just sent 1,000 jobs overseas — jobs Americans lost, and jobs that either Russian or Chinese workers will get instead. And instead of bankrupting this new coal plant, they just made it dirtier. Good job!
Two Democrats in Wisconsin, neither up for re-election, scrambled to find political cover in the wake of the devastating decision. Governor Jim Doyle and Senator Herb Kohl both publicly objected to the decision and promised to push for a reversal, even though there is no appeal at the Export-Import Bank. Senator Russ Feingold, who is running for re-election, has been quiet about the debacle thus far. The most liberal member of the Senate has expressed skepticism about cap-and-trade, but only in the way carbon allotments punish Wisconsin in order to benefit California and Massachusetts — the two states where the bill’s authors reside in both the House and Senate versions of the bill.
A whole lot of us (not the main stream media of course) were shouting about Obama’s desire to kill the coal industry when he was running for president. But obviously those on the left in places like Milwaukee and Madison didn’t want to listen. So as the old saying goes, you reap what you sow. How’s that hopen’change working out for you Wisconsin? Here is a refresher for everyone who wouldn’t listen during the election.