EPA Regulator Recommends Against Spruce Mountaintop Removal Project


photo via RAN

Environmental groups and community members have been warning about Arch Coal's proposed Spruce No. 1 Mine in Logan County, West Virginia, saying that the mine, among the nation's largest proposed mountaintop removal site, would devastate the area around it. Apparently, the EPA is listening, and yesterday it made an announcement that a federal regulator recommended weeks ago to revoke the mine's permit.Shawn M. Garvin, the Environmental Protection Agency's regional administrator for the Mid-Atlantic, said the mine "would likely have unacceptable adverse effects on wildlife."

For the past several months, there have been protests against the mine, including one with Dr. James Hansen of NASA. The project was approved by the Bush administration in 2007, which would involve blowing the tops of mountains over 2,278 acres to harvest the coal beneath. The waste would be dumped into the nearby waterways, creating untold damage.

Naturally, Arch is up in arms over the recommendation. Kim Link, a spokeswoman for Arch Coal, said in a statement:

"If the E.P.A. proceeds with its unlawful veto of the Spruce permit -- as it appears determined to do -- West Virginia's economy and future tax base will suffer a serious blow."

A final decision is expected by the end of the year.

More on the Spruce Project
Over 100 Arrested, Including James Hansen, At White House Over Mountaintop Removal
USEPA Yanks Existing Fill Permit For Spruce Mine #1: Largest ...

Tags: Coal