Halt To Mining Permit Draws Fire In Coal Country Reaction in West Virginia to the Environmental Protection Agency's decision to halt a permit for the state's largest mountaintop removal mining project has been heated. It's part of an Obama administration effort to crack down on the controversial mining practice. But in coal country, the move has angered some.
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Halt To Mining Permit Draws Fire In Coal Country

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Halt To Mining Permit Draws Fire In Coal Country

Halt To Mining Permit Draws Fire In Coal Country

Halt To Mining Permit Draws Fire In Coal Country

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  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/132940226/132940425" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
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Reaction in West Virginia to the Environmental Protection Agency's decision to halt a permit for the state's largest mountaintop removal mining project has been heated. It's part of an Obama administration effort to crack down on the controversial mining practice. But in coal country, the move has angered some.

MICHELE NORRIS, Host:

Emily Corio of West Virginia Public Broadcasting reports.

EMILY CORIO: The EPA revoked a permit that would have allowed Arch Coal Company to bury tons of rubble in streams. West Virginia's Environmental Protection secretary, Randy Huffman, says the Army Corps of Engineers issued the permit in 2007 and he disagrees with EPA's veto.

RANDY HUFFMAN: The issue about the veto is the fact that the federal government has gone back on its word and changed its mind after four years, and that's just unacceptable.

CORIO: The Ohio Valley Environmental Coalition is one of several groups trying to stop the mine since it was first proposed in the 1990s. Project coordinator, Vivian Stockman, is pleased with the EPA's veto, and not surprised by the reactions of politicians and the coal industry.

VIVIAN STOCKMAN: They're really failing to look at the big picture here, which is there can be no economic development is areas where there is no clean water.

CORIO: For NPR News, I'm Emily Corio in Morgantown, West Virginia.

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