Report: WH May Force Electric Cos to Buy From Coal Plants

The Trump administration reportedly plans to save struggling U.S. coal power plants by ordering grid operators to buy electricity from them, a move that Bloomberg News describes as an “unprecedented intervention into U.S. energy markets.” Citing a 41-page draft memo outlining the plans, Bloomberg News reports that the Energy Department wants to use emergency authority under two federal laws to force operators to buy electricity or electric-generation capacity from money-losing facilities. “Federal action is necessary to stop the further premature retirements of fuel-secure generation capacity,” the memo reportedly states. The issue is said to be up for discussion at a National Security Council meeting Friday. It was not immediately clear if President Trump, who repeatedly vowed to save coal plants on the campaign trail, had signed off on the plan.