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Trump Weighs 2015 Grid Emergency Law to Save Coal Plants

  • Reliability of power grid requires action, official says
  • Nuclear and coal plant closings are driving a broad review
Coal Fired Power Plants As Regulators Reject U.S. Energy Secretary Rick Perry's Proposal
Photographer: Daniel Acker/Bloomberg

The Trump administration is weighing a broad array of strategies for keeping coal and nuclear power plants online as a matter of national security, with options ranging from invoking a 68-year-old law to a three-year-old one, according to a senior Energy Department official.

Members of the National Security Council agree that something must be done to ensure the long-term reliability and resiliency of the nation’s electric grid, said the official, who asked to speak anonymously about internal deliberations. More than 90 percent of American military installations are served by civilian utilities, and the government has an obligation to ensure those facilities are safe and supplied by electricity, the official said.