Mining permit case headed to U.S. Supreme Court - WVVA TV Bluefield Beckley WV News, Weather and Sports

Mining permit case headed to U.S. Supreme Court

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Bluefield, W.Va.--West Virginia joins a bipartisan effort to get the U.S. Supreme Court to review a case involving a mining permit revoked by the Environmental Protection Agency.

More specifically, the Spruce #1 Mine in Logan County owned by Arch Coal. Though a surface mining permit was issued in 2007 by the Army Corp of Engineers, four years later the EPA revoked the permit, citing a likely adverse effect on wildlife.    

The case has made its way though the federal court system. Arch Coal won a lawsuit filed in district court but the ruling was overturned earlier this year.

Attorney General Patrick Morrisey says 27 states have joined in the fight, including Attorney Generals in Virginia, Ohio, and Pennsylvania.

"Whether it comes to coal permits or public works projects; dams, bridges, highways, you need to have certainty in a process. What the EPA is doing is having an incredible chilling effect across West Virginia and our country. Because if you can yank a permit back four years after its approved, then you are not going to get the capital investment to flow and that is really bad for West Virginia and our county, says West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey.

Morrisey is optimistic despite his admission that only a quarter of state filed cases are heard by the Supreme Court.

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