Skip to comments.Agency Revokes Permit for Major Coal Mining Projec
Posted on 01/14/2011 2:44:56 AM PST by Cincinatus' Wife
WASHINGTON The Environmental Protection Agency revoked the permit for one of the nations largest mountaintop-removal coal mining projects on Thursday, saying the mine would have done unacceptable damage to rivers, wildlife and communities in West Virginia. It was the first time the agency had rescinded a valid clean water permit for a coal mine.
Arch Coals proposed Spruce No. 1 Mine in Logan County, which would have buried miles of Appalachian streams under millions of tons of residue, has been the subject of controversy and litigation since the first application was filed more than a decade ago. Opposition intensified after the Bush administration approved the mines construction in 2007, issuing a permit required under the Clean Water Act.
The boldness of the E.P.A.s action was striking at a time when the agency faces an increasingly hostile Congress and well-financed business lobbies seeking to limit its regulatory reach. Agency officials said that the coal company was welcome to resubmit a less damaging mining plan, but that law and science demanded the veto of the existing plan.
...An official of Arch Coal, based in St. Louis, said the company would continue to challenge the federal action in court.
We remain shocked and dismayed at E.P.A.s continued onslaught with respect to this validly issued permit, said Kim Link, the companys spokeswoman. Absent court intervention, E.P.A.s final determination to veto the Spruce permit blocks an additional $250 million investment and 250 well-paying American jobs.
Furthermore, we believe this decision will have a chilling effect on future U.S. investment, she added, because every business possessing or requiring a permit under Section 404 of the Clean Water Act will fear similar overreaching by the E.P.A. Its a risk many businesses cannot afford to take. ...
(Excerpt) Read more at nytimes.com ...
The Liberal RX for our economy is like old medical practices. Doctors used to “Bleed” their patients to try to cure them. Liberal economics mirrors these outdated treatments.
Scuttling job creating and America enriching energy independence while decreasing the value of our dollar is resulting not only in high unemployment but growing inflation—only a matter of time before things get so bad Americans will beg for a “dependable dictator.”
I never thought this basic Marxist-Leninist strategy would work here.
I am a PE who has filed for several 401/404 permits on behalf of various clients. If this permit truly involves miles of streams being covered by this activity(Please be aware that the term stream at a mountain top involves ephemeral streams-Basically anything that could carry water in a decent downfall, i.e. a swale in the ground) then there were significant mitigation fees paid by the permittee-probably hundreds of dollars/foot. What this means is that EPA just cut their own financial throats, along with Arch and WV, in order to make for some headlines to impress their SWPL voting base. On the other hand my family owns some private coal company rights and I say, “Well that is a little less supply.”. Prices and checks up! Yea Ha!
“Energy prices will necessarily skyrocket.”
I posted this on another thread as I believe the general public does not know the real truth:
I am extremely familiar with this permit. This permit has been in the process for almost 10 years. The Corp of Engineers and the State granted the permit until the EPA stepped in. The leg that the EPA is standing on for vetoing this permit is that the stream flow will be interrupted (these are not perennial streams) and will have an affect on the MAY FLY! Guess how long the May Fly lives?......a couple of days. The streams that they are referring to are about 36,000 total feet of stream. A very small portion of this stream they do deem as perennial stream. This area is around 4-6 deep. There is no fish habitat and no possibility for it to be used as recreational. They wanted to issue a permit for the first valley fill and monitor water quality in that first fill (and whatever other b/s they come with) then they would evaluate that first valley fill success or failure. After the final report on this valley fill they then would determine whether to issue the next permit. Kinda like mine and permit as you go.
Now, how many companies would commit $300MM dollars to a project not knowing what the future is due to not being able to permit the whole lease?
It doesn’t matter that this company is the safest mining company in the World, let alone having the lowest violatons per inspections by the state or EPA regarding environmental violations. This boiles down to one thing.....shutting down mining in the U.S.
The water quality standards they imposed last year are so bizzare that the run-off coming from the EPA’s parking ot doesn’t comply. Completely insane.
Oh great, grant a permit and then revoke it. Way to stimulate the economy. Now in order to get the coal out, more miners would need to go underground at greater risk to their lives.
This was O’s notion: make energy so expensive people will have to cut back on using it.
Just read elsewhere on FR that CA has imposed so many rules on energy that it may make electric cars too expensive to drive.
Food prices be damned, poor be damned, fuel prices be DAMNED!
Well, damn you Zero!
This is going to go over very badly in rough and tumble Logan County.
There is but one solution to the problem. It is considered extreme and can’t be mentioned.
Even under the Bush administration’s famously friendly stance toward the extractive industries, miners began to report an uptick in permitting scrutiny last year. Scores of permits were further delayed by court proceedings that ultimately failed to compel the Army Corps of Engineers to revamp the permit-review process.
Setting a new tone for the Environmental Protection Agency, administrator Lisa Jackson directed the agency to review 150 to 200 permits for new or expanded surface mines. In letters to the Corps, she voiced particular concern with three proposals — involving miners like Massey Energy (NYSE: MEE) and Patriot Coal (NYSE: PCX) — over worries about water quality and the continuity of existing streams.
Looks like they won’t be the only one...just the first.
I always appreciate an informed view such as yours to provide context to the headlines. Thanks for sharing.
The business atmosphere created by this administration IMO largely guarantees that no serious investment in American industry will be made by the private investment sector in the foreseeable future. The rulebook has been torn up and thrown away; no reliance can any longer be placed upon the existence of a reasonable and consistent regulatory playing field. Washington DC now functionally controls the American economy.
Where’s good ‘ol Joe Manchin now?? Big tough guy - resurrects his languishing senatorial campaign with a phony rifle/shooting bad legislation ad; defiantly proclaims he’ll be his “own man” and fight against Obama for his state. Well, white courtesy phone’s ringing, Joe! You gonna pick it up or, much more likely (now that you’ve been elected), be the Obama lackey we all knew you’d be!
The EPA dis not revoke the permit. The revocation was signed by an individual. A person revoked the permit.
Who was that person? Where does she live? What is her phone number? What is her mother’s phone number? Where does she live?
That’s my first question. Is he going to stand up to obama’s EPA?
My thought exactly! Idiot voters in WV should proud of themselves now!
Where is Joe Manchin?
Probably cowering off in a corner somewhere afraid to take on obama and the DC elites... Lest he be called a redneck racist.