A small victory in the war on coal

President Barack Obama’s war on coal and reasonably priced electricity has been a near-total success – from his viewpoint. For millions of Americans who will pay higher electric bills because of it, not so much.

But a small victory was won last week, when the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency backed away from a proposal to regulate as a hazardous waste the ash produced when coal is burned at power plants. EPA officials have announced coal ash is safe for use in construction materials.

U.S. Rep. David McKinley, R-W.Va., deserves some credit. He has led the fight against the EPA’s initial plan to regulate coal ash as a hazardous waste.

Still, as McKinley noted, the battle is not over. The House of Representatives passed his bill, providing for a reasonable system of regulating coal ash. Now, the Senate should follow suit, to ensure the EPA does not change its mind again.