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ACC criticises federal coal lease moratorium

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World Coal,

The American Coal Council (ACC) has joined the chorus of voices criticising the US Department of the Interior’s decision to impose a moratorium on federal coal leases.

The lobby group, which represents both coal producers and consumers, as well as support industries, called the policy “one more slice in the administration’s ‘death by a thousand cuts’ policies enacted against coal.”

“The moratorium fits an established pattern of stalling energy development with endless claims of a ‘need’ for one more study, one more review, or one more hearing,” the ACC continued in a press release.

The approvals process for federal coal leases already requires a number of both state and federal environmental reviews and can take over a decade – a timescale that will be lengthened by the moratorium. Meanwhile, according to the ACC, the federal coal programme has generated nearly US$12 billion for state and federal governments over the past decade.

“The moratorium in the federal coal leasing programme is further evidence that the president’s “All of the Above’ energy policy doe not include coal,” concluded the ACC. “Instead, the administration is proceeding with a ‘Leep it in the Ground’ policy that will be detrimental to all Americans and jeapardise affordable, reliable and secure energy.”

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