“Mining permits are being issued despite the preponderance of scientific evidence that impacts are pervasive and irreversible and that mitigation cannot compensate for the losses.”
Photo by Paul Corbit Brown
That quote above is the conclusion of a blockbuster study being published tomorrow by a group of the nation’s top scientists, detailing the incredibly damaging environmental impacts of mountaintop removal coal mining and the failed efforts at reclaiming mined land or mitigating the effects.
Based on a comprehensive analysis of the latest scientific findings, the paper calls on the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the federal Army Corps of Engineers to stay all new mountaintop removal mining permits unless new mining and reclamation techniques “can be subjected to rigorous peer review and shown to remedy these problems.”
According to the paper:
.. Clearly, current attempts to regulate MTM/VF practices are inadequate … Regulators should no longer ignore rigorous science.
A press release explained that:
In their paper, the authors outline severe environmental degradation taking place at mining sites and downstream. The practice destroys extensive tracts of deciduous forests and buries small streams that play essential roles in the overall health of entire watersheds. Waterborne contaminants enter streams that remain below valley fills and can be transported great distances into larger bodies of water.