Governor Mead Responds to Moratorium on Federal Coal Leasing

Governor Mead Responds to Moratorium on Federal Coal Leasing

WYOMING — Today the Department of Interior announced a moratorium on new coal leases on federal lands. The moratorium will remain in place until a programmatic environmental analysis is completed.

“This Administration’s attempts to suppress the use of coal have largely been through Environmental  Protection Agency (EPA) regulations.  The Regional Haze rule, the mercury and air toxics standards (MATS) rule, the Clean Power Plan – these are some but not all the regulations we have fought. Today’s move – imposing a moratorium on new coal leases on federal lands – goes beyond EPA regulation,” Governor Matt Mead said.

“It could not be more plain – in fact, it is starkly apparent – this Administration is no friend to coal when it flatly says there will be no new coal leases until some indefinite point in time.”  Governor Matt Mead

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Governor Mead further said, “The Administration’s move today is drastic and uncalled for. Not only will it hurt miners and all businesses that support coal mining, it will take away all the competitive advantage coal provides to every U.S. citizen. If there was a serious attempt to address the President’s climate change concern, the Administration should be investing, as Wyoming is investing, to make real improvements in carbon capture, sequestration and utilization technology. One such example is the Integrated Test Center which will accelerate clean coal technology, benefiting not only the industry but a great many people everywhere who rely on coal for their energy needs.”

Governor Mead continued, “To the extent Administration officials have environmental concerns, our world-class reclamation efforts are here for all to see, and I invite Secretary Jewell and BLM Director Kornze to visit Wyoming coal country.”

Wyoming coal producers pay – federal mineral royalty, Wyoming severance tax, Abandoned Mine Lands, Black Lung Tax, Ad Valorem Property, Ad Valorem Production, and Lease Bonus Application. The industry has an effective tax rate of 40%. All of these revenue streams go to the public in various ways. Governor Mead challenged the Administration to name another industry with an effective 40% tax rate.