I spoke at the regional EPA hearing in Dallas on carbon limits Thursday.
Before I spoke at the hearing, I spoke at the Sierra Club’s Beyond Coal press conference shortly after noon. That statement was basically identical to one I gave at OU last summer.
I did not give my prepared statement at the EPA hearing. A lot more people wanted to speak than was expected. Lines to speak were long. Time to speak was being cut. Many of the speakers were well prepared and were providing a lot of technical scientific information. Much of it was repetitive.
I followed a man who was speaking on behalf of a company that provided electricity to small municipalities in Texas. He expressed sympathy for those concerned about the detrimental effects of coal but said he had a responsibility to provide energy at the most affordable price.
It was nearly 1:30 PM when it was my turn to speak. The EPA staff was weary and hungry. They were taking a break for lunch at 1:30. I decided the most effective thing to do was to be brief and direct. Here is something close to what I said:
"I have a prepared statement, but in the interests of time I am cutting my remarks to where the rubber hits the road at my house.
My wife is a diabetic with a heart condition and asthma. Every time pollutants rise and air quality deteriorates, she suffers.
I am concerned about the health of my wife and my children. We hope you will close the coal fired power plants as soon as possible. They are the source of most of the pollution. We need them to switch to natural gas and renewable sources of energy.