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Center for Coalfield Justice critical of Wolf's decision on mining bill

Written by Marie Cusick/StateImpact Pennsylvania | Jul 25, 2017 5:25 AM
coal_mining_somerset_county.jpg

A worker runs a miner machine at a coal mine in Friedens, Somerset County. Corsa Coal Corp. says the mine will create 70 to 100 new jobs and produce some 400,000 tons of metallurgical coal a year. (AP Photo/Dake Kang)

(Harrisburg) -- Governor Tom Wolf is allowing a controversial coal mining bill to become law.

The move is angering environmental groups who say the measure gives coal companies the green-light to damage streams.

The new law gives coal companies an exemption from an 80-year-old law protecting Pennsylvania's waterways.

Veronica Coptis heads the Center for Coalfield Justice. She says she's disappointed Governor Wolf didn't veto the law.

"He's failed again as a progressive leader and is allowing an environmental justice community that's already been damaged by corporate greed to suffer yet another blow," she says.

The law could derail a related case environmental groups are pursuing before the State Environmental Hearing Board.

Proponents say the coal mining industry would be upended if environmentalist prevail in their current case.

 

 

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