America’s environmental regulations have hampered the coal industry to varying degrees for decades, and though those rules can protect communities from pollution, the law alone is often not able to secure clean water. Here are some of the trouble spots.
From The Appalachian Voice Online: Yet another aspect of the financial perils facing U.S. coal companies is coming into full view. As even some of the nation’s largest coal producers run the risk of caving under their debts, regulators and analysts are voicing urgent concerns about cash-strapped companies’ ability to pay for reclamation land after mining.
Two recent studies include more bad news regarding the impacts of mountaintop removal on streams throughout Central Appalachia. One indicates that work done to restore previously degraded streams is inadequate, while the other raises important questions about the feasibility of selenium pollution enforcement.
Contact Appalachian Voices: Eric Chance, 828-262-1500, email@example.com Kentuckians For The Commonwealth: Suzanne Tallichet, 606-776-7970, firstname.lastname@example.org Center for Biological Diversity: Tierra Curry, 971-717-6402, email@example.com Sierra Club: Adam Beitman, (202) 675-2385, firstname.lastname@example.org Defenders of Wildlife: Melanie Gade, (202) 772-0288, email@example.com Kentucky Waterways…
Most people have probably never heard of selenium, but for coal operators and fish it’s a big deal. Appalachian Voices’ water quality expert takes a moment to explain the issues surrounding this mineral — necessary in small amounts but toxic to aquatic life even at very low levels — and the EPA’s controversial attempts to regulate it.
A study from researchers at the U.S. Geological Survey published in July provides strong new evidence that mountaintop removal coal mining in Appalachia is devastating downstream fish populations.
Over 2,000 miles of streams have been buried by Mountain Top Removal mining, and many more have been degraded. This seems like it should be illegal, but the destructive practice continues. That’s why Appalachian Voices has been working to keep the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and industry from opening up new loopholes in our environmental laws that would make it easier to poison streams.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is poised to loosen national recommended water quality standards for selenium, a toxic pollutant commonly released from mountaintop removal coal mines. You can stand up for streams in Appalachia by submitting comments urging the EPA to protect aquatic life and strengthen selenium standards.
Resources EPA Draft Selenium Standards Selenium in Kentucky Fact Sheet Read more about selenium on our blog Contact: Eric Chance, Water Quality Specialist, 828-262-1500, firstname.lastname@example.org Erin Savage, Water Quality Specialist, 828-262-1500, email@example.com Cat McCue, Communications Director, 434-293-6373, firstname.lastname@example.org Washington, D.C.…
After emerging from bankruptcy, Patriot Coal CEO Bennett Hatfield said in an interview with SNL Energy that the 2012 settlement over selenium pollution that forced the company to begin phasing out mountaintop removal proved to be a “win-win.” Even before…