Coal mining giant Consol has been illegally destroying streams in Southwestern Pennsylvania with its longwall mining practices for years, and the Center for Coalfield Justice (CCJ) been fighting them in court every step of the way.
Now, on the eve of a major court decision on CCJâ€™s appeal of its mining permits, the company is worried it might lose. Its response? Just change the law to make it legal for them to destroy streams as long as they promise to try to restore them. We cannot let this happen.
Currently, the Mining Law requires companies to abide by the Clean Streams Law and do everything possible to avoid predicted pollution and other stream damage in the first place. Â This bill would make it legal for longwall mines to predict and cause subsidence that results in total flow loss in streams, killing all aquatic life and eliminating recreational uses. Â The â€œrestorationâ€ process is not always successful, and is itself a highly destructive construction project that eliminates stream uses and habitat.
Consol could use alternative coal mining practices that prevent subsidence under streams and create more jobs. Â But it chooses not to because it alleges these methods are less profitable. Â Meanwhile, our communities suffer the consequences. Not even state parks are safe from the companyâ€™s greed, as it is pushing for permission to destroy streams within Ryerson Station State Park. Weâ€™ve prevented that so far, but if we want to prevail we cannot allow any special exemptions to the Clean Streams Law.
Thank you for protecting our streams, parks, and communities!
Center for Coalfield Justice