For Immediate Release

Organization Profile: 
Contact: 

Joe Smyth, Greenpeace Communications, 831-566-5647, joe.smyth@greenpeace.org

Interior Department Announces Next Step in Federal Coal Program Review: Greenpeace Response

The department had previously announced a moratorium and sweeping review of the federal coal program, which allows fossil fuel companies to lease public lands for coal extraction.

WASHINGTON - On Thursday, the Interior Department announced the next step in its comprehensive review of the federal coal program, publishing a Notice of Intent (NOI) to begin the scoping process for a Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement (PEIS).

In response, Greenpeace Energy Campaign Director Kelly Mitchell said:

“The Obama administration is asking Americans to help shape the future of the federal coal program, a welcome change from the past when companies like Peabody ran the show without any oversight. Instead of giving away our coal to an industry that has shown nothing but contempt for communities and the environment, we should be planning how to quickly transition from coal to 100% renewable energy.”

A Greenpeace report published last week showed that federal coal accounts for most of the coal mined by the three biggest coal companies in the US, Peabody Energy, Arch Coal, and Cloud Peak Energy. Using government data, the report also revealed several instances in which coal companies mined more coal than they had reported and paid for, among other ways in which the coal industry has dominated federal coal management decisions.

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