The Sept. 10 Forum article “The War on Coal Communities: Strip Mining” is out of touch with today’s coal mining industry. Its author fails to acknowledge that the Surface Mining Reclamation and Control Act of 1977 is not a one-size-fits-all program. Each U.S. mine has detailed plans on how the mined land will be restored — which must be then approved by the government.
The piece devotes much of its time to describing techniques that “started in earnest during the 1940s” but ignores that mining has changed significantly in the 80 years since. Technological advancements, higher industry standards and increased state and federal oversight have contributed to a safer, cleaner responsible industry that cares about the communities in which its employees live and work. Further, mountaintop mining accounts for less than 0.6 percent of coal mining today and continues to be on the decline.
Coal continues to be an important source of electricity. The public deserves an accurate picture of how the industry has changed and advanced to ensure environmentally responsible, affordable and reliable energy for all.
President and CEO
National Mining Association
See the article here.
- On September 18, 2017