Appeals Court Reinstates Corps of Engineers Permits for Mountaintop Removal Coal Mining
RICHMOND, Va. A federal appeals court Wednesday reinstated a streamlined Army Corps of Engineers process for granting permits for mountaintop-removal coal mining in West Virginia.
A three-judge panel of the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals unanimously overruled a lower-court judge, finding that the corps complied with the Clean Water Act.
In mountaintop mining, hilltops are blasted away to uncover coal seams, and the leftover rock and dirt are dumped into adjacent valleys, burying streams.
Last year, in a victory for environmental groups, U.S. District Judge Joseph Goodwin last year revoked 11 permits issued by the Corps. Among other things, he said the Corps had not followed the proper procedures under environmental protection laws.
Source: Associated Press