By Tripp Baltz

Several Western states are facing off this spring over the future of their power production, an escalating war of words and—increasingly—litigation, stretching from America’s coal core to its aspiring clean energy coast.

Wyoming set aside $1.2 million in taxpayer money for the sole purpose of suing any state that divests from its coal. And in neighboring Montana, owners of the Colstrip coal-fired generating station are fighting over whether to double down on the massive plant or exit the coal game entirely, the preference—or mandate—of power companies in the Pacific Northwest.

“Affordable power generated in Colstrip helped build Seattle’s big tech economy,” Montana Gov. Greg Gianforte (R) said May 3, signing a law to move disputes among its owners from Washington state to courts in Montana. “But now woke, overzealous regulators in Washington state are punishing the people of Colstrip with their anti-coal agenda.”

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