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Articles by MattWasson

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Cross-posted from

A month ago, before the nation’s attention was drawn to the tragedies at the Upper Big Branch Mine in West Virginia and the oil rig off the Louisiana coast, the EPA issued a blockbuster announcement about a strict new guidance for the permitting of mountaintop removal mines in Appalachia. The announcement left many people — reporters, politicians, and the general public alike — confused whether or not the EPA had just put an end to mountaintop removal. The announcement generated headlines ranging from a fairly modest “E.P.A. to Limit Water Pollution From Mining” in the New York Times to “New regulations will put an end to mountaintop mining?” in the Guardian.

Certainly at the press conference EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson used some strong language:

Coal communities should not have to sacrifice their environment or their health or their economic future to mountaintop mining. They deserve the full protection of our clean water laws.

Mountaintop removal mine site above route 23 in Pike County, KentuckyPhoto courtesy iLoveMountains.orgOn... Read more

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