08/21/2017 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 08/21/2017 15:53
WASHINGTON - Today, Congressman John Yarmuth (KY-03) released the statement below following the Department of Interior's Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement's (OSMRE) decision to halt a National Academy of Sciences study into the correlation between potential health risks and living in proximity to surface coal mining sites in Appalachia.
'The Department of Interior's decision to halt this important study is yet another example of this administration's irresponsible budget priorities that are damaging scientific research and jeopardizing the health and safety of American families,' said Yarmuth. 'We have a public health crisis in Appalachia that is the direct result of mountaintop removal mining. The fact that mountaintop removal permits have been approved when there has never been a federal study on the health effects of mountaintop removal mining is shameful enough. To now prevent this study from being completed would be reprehensible.'
Rep. Yarmuth has introduced H.R. 786, the Appalachian Communities Health Emergency (ACHE) Act, legislation that would place a moratorium on all new mountaintop coal removal mining permits until the Department of Health and Human Services determines that such mining does not present any health risk to individuals in surrounding communities.