Washington, D.C. — Center for American Progress Visiting Senior Fellow David J. Hayes released the following statement today about the Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement’s, or OSMRE’s, proposed rule to better protect streams and drinking water supplies from the effects of mountaintop removal coal mining. Hayes served as deputy secretary of the interior in the administrations of Presidents Bill Clinton and Barack Obama:
The current rules for mountaintop removal coal mining, which are more than 30 years old, fail to protect local communities that count on healthy streams and clean drinking water supplies. The proposed rule addresses key defects in the current rules—including bonding reforms so that taxpayers are not left footing the bill for environmental damage—and establishes clear baseline testing, monitoring, and restoration requirements. With a variety of alternatives outlined in the proposed rule, the public and all stakeholders now have an opportunity to weigh in and ensure that the final rule has the type of strong and clear protections that local communities have a right to expect from our government.
For more information on this topic or to speak with an expert, contact Tom Caiazza at firstname.lastname@example.org or 202.481.7141.