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NMA urges Congress to block Stream Buffer Rule

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World Coal,

The National Mining Association (NMA) encourages Congress to block the Stream Buffer Zone regulation set out by the Office of Surface Mining and Reclamation Enforcement (OSM). The NMA believe it will cause further job losses and it is not adding any further environmental protections that are not already ensured by state and federal agencies as well as it not responding to new evidence of water quality damage.

“This is a rule in search of a problem,” commented NMA President and CEO, Hal Quinn. “It has nothing to do with new science and everything to do with an old and troubling agenda for separating more coal miners from their jobs. The agency’s own reports on existing state regulatory programmes show the vast majority of mine sites are free of any offsite impacts and the agency has produced no evidence to justify more regulations, let alone redundant ones that interfere with state agencies mining and water quality laws.”

Quinn went on to explain this framework is added onto existing regulations on identical issues. It is needless, conflicting and hinders coal production without any benefits.

The NMA has explained this regulation is not confined to Appalachian surface mines but would apply to all mining operations nationwide. It was developed without state agency experts who have publicly criticised OSM’s disdain for the viewpoints of those who either operate or regulate coal mines. “By ignoring state officials, OSM has made a mockery of the administration’s pledge toward greater transparency,” Quinn further added.

Edited from press release by Harleigh Hobbs

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