Powder River Coal Team Still Meeting To Talk Land Leases

(Wyoming) A meeting was scheduled at the Wyoming Oil and Gas Conservation Commission in Casper for January 27th, next Wednesday, to discuss applications that were submitted for land leases on coal mines. Then the Department of the Interior announced there wouldn't be any new land leases on coal mines, at least not for three years while they perform an Environmental Impact Study. You'd think that the meeting would be cancelled, but it's not. At 9am next Wednesday, the Powder River Regional Coal Team will still hear the two presentations from Antelope Coal Company (Antelope Mine) and Lighthouse Resources (West Decker Mine, Montana). “Under the Secretary’s Order these two pending Lease By Applications can continue to be moved through the NEPA [National Environmental Policy Act] process subject to the Regional Coal Team recommendation,” said Mary Jo Rugweel, acting BLM director for Wyoming. The companies have a need for additional reserves to maintain production. The Regional Coal Team has to make a recommendation to the Bureau of Land Management on whether or not to process the pending coal leases. No leasing decisions will be made at the meeting. The loan process can still move forward on the applications, but a final decision cannot be made by the Bureau of Land Management until the Evironmental Impact Statement is finished. In addition to Montana and Wyoming's governors, the Regional Coal Team includes other BLM directors, members from other federal and state agencies, and representatives from county governments and Native American tribes. Members of the public will also be allowed to speak at the end of the meeting, which will include other presentations about coal in Wyoming. #county17 #news -- *Brenda Kirk* Community Maven for | 614.940.7121 Twitter | Instagram | Facebook PitchEngine™ | *Connecting Communities* | Twitter | Facebook