State political economy being what it is, coal-fired power plant owners and their employees and customers still have a lot more political power in PA than Democrats who care about breathing clean air.
Hence state environmental regulations are super weak, and PA ranks third worst in the nation for toxic air pollution from power plants:
Pennsylvania ranks third worst in the nation when it comes to power plant pollution, according to a new report from the Natural Resources Defense Council.
The latest grade is a slight improvement from 2011, when the council ranked the state second worst overall. The data, compiled in 2010, held Pennsylvania accountable for 10 percent of all toxic pollution from power plants across the country with the release of about 31.85 million pounds of harmful chemicals.
The good news is that the EPA’s new regulations of coal-fired plants are forcing many older plants to close or clean up their act.