Biden Admin Seeks Ban on New Coal Mines at Major Federal Hub

( – Climate change warriors got some good news recently as the federal Bureau of Land Management proposed banning new coal mining leases at a major production hub. The Powder River Basin is located partially in Montana and part in Wyoming and produces about 43% of US coal. As expected, both sides of the issue had something to say about the proposals.

Under the changes proposed on May 16, companies could not apply for new leases to operate coal mines in the basin. Existing leases can still be used. Under the new plan, mining would still be active until 2060 in Montana and 2041 in Wyoming.

Proponents herald the ban as a positive step in the fight against climate change emissions. Lynne Huskinson, a board member of the Powder River Basin Resource Council and a former coal miner, said in a statement that mining had negatively impacted the environment for decades and that she welcomed a “just economic transition” toward clean energy.

On the other hand, opponents slammed the proposals. Senator John Barrasso (R-WY), ranking member of the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources, said in a joint statement with other state leaders that the bans would “kill jobs and could cost Wyoming hundreds of millions of dollars.” The senator says this money is used for essential services like infrastructure projects and to fund public schools.

Representative Harriet Hageman (R-WY) added, “This decision to eviscerate Wyoming’s coal production will impact every American’s access to affordable and reliable energy.”

Elected officials in Montana also released a statement condemning the proposed ban. In it, Senator Steve Daines (R-MT) said the bans would hurt the country and the state regarding energy independence and the loss of well-paying jobs.

The bans are currently just proposals, and protests can be filed against them for 30 days following their release on May 16.

~Here’s to Our Liberty!

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