Washington, DC – U.S. Senator Benjamin L. Cardin (D-MD), chairman of the Senate Environment and Public Works Water and Wildlife Subcommittee, applauded the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) today for its continued recognition that the best available science should be at the core of regulatory measures designed to prevent irreversible damage to our waters.
“A growing body of scientific evidence demonstrates with alarming clarity that waste from mountaintop removal mining is poisoning adjacent streams in a way we don’t have the knowledge or tools to reverse. The new studies released today by EPA Administrator Jackson echo the commitment she made during her Senate confirmation hearing that ‘[s]cience must be the backbone of what EPA does.’ The guidance for approving mining permits, based on these new scientific studies, will help control the damage caused by mountaintop removal mining. But the science shows us that if we are to truly protect our mountains, streams and the people who depend on them, we must bring the practice of mountaintop removal mining to an end.”
Senator Cardin and Senator Lamar Alexander (R-TN) have sponsored S. 696, The Appalachian Restoration Act that would end the practice of mountaintop removal coal mining. In 2009, Senator Cardin chaired the first Environment and Public Works Committee hearing in seven years examining the practice of mountaintop removal operations and its impact on the local communities and environment.