Through his West Virginia Coal Conversion Initiative, Gov. Joe Manchin is promoting development of coal liquefaction processes that convert coal to motor fuel. He promises streamlined permitting for companies that want to build coal conversion plants in West Virginia that can produce highly desirable motor fuels.
But West Virginia's energy opportunity extends far beyond coal-to-motor fuel opportunities.
The American power grid is a thirsty beast that demands more and more energy, and coal is the nation's most affordable energy source for the foreseeable future. Coal's critics object loudly to the burning of fossil fuels, but the doomsday crowd offers few alternatives that can satisfy the nation's energy needs.
Along with Senator Byrd and the rest of West Virginia's leadership (besides Capito), I am confident that more opportunities will present themselves to West Virginia in the form of jobs. And not just any jobs, but coal/energy related jobs that will benefit WV and demonstrate how our roots in Coal is long standing and bright. As more inventions and innovations revise the life of the coal industry, we can again smile and welcome the chance for a better WV... but we gotta keep an eye on that Blankenship guy.