It's not every day an industry-written blog post catches my eye, but one did this week. The National Mining Association wrote that electric cars will need reliable electricity from coal-fired power plants.
Why it matters: It's the first time the group, which represents coal mining companies, has waded into the hot-button topic of electric cars, according to a spokesman for the group. The blog post is an under-reported example of how the coal industry is arguing its product is still needed despite its decline relative to natural gas.
"Today coal generates a third of the nation's electricity, ensuring that many EV batteries will be charged with coal-generated power," according to the blog, which goes on to say that coal is needed to ensure the grid remains reliable as more EV's plug into it to charge up.
Fact check: Grid reliability isn't going to be a problem with electric cars for quite some time. "It's not really a problem until you're getting into the hundreds of millions, and we're only at a million" electric cars, says Robbie Diamond, president and CEO of Securing America's Future, a group working to wean the U.S. off oil that supports electric cars.
One level deeper: Diamond said NMA's entry into this debate makes sense and is ultimately good for the cause of EVs, even if some environmentalists may not agree. It's easier to handle the emissions of thousands of power plants instead of millions of cars. Once people on a mass scale adopt electric cars and start plugging in, it'll be easier to cut emissions, Diamond argues.