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Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Mountain top removal ban unconstitutional?

As I was leaving the chambers last night I was told that a ban similar to the ban on mountain top removal being discussed in Tennessee was struck down as unconstitutional for Kentucky by a federal judge in DC. I guess this kills the Tennessee bill as well.

More to come.


  1. You are sadly mistaken! Tennessee is set to be the first state to pass a ban on this economically foolish practice. No more delays, pass the TSVPA!

    From the Tennessee Department of Tourist Development web site (http://www.tn.gov/tourdev/): "More than 175,000 Tennesseans are now employed in the state's tourism industry." According to the Tennessee Mining Association (www.tnmining.com/tnmining/images/pdf/presskit.pdf)"...the coal mining industry provides jobs for at least 1,500 Tennesseans (includes the coffee machine guy)."

  2. You are sadly mistaken! Tennessee will be the first state to ban this particularly destructive, unsustainable and economically foolhardy form of coal mining. Don’t be fooled, Mountaintop Removal employs only a few hundred, at best, people compared to the 150,000 tourism jobs in Tennessee. If you can’t support the TSVPA because it’s the Christian thing to do; and you can’t support it because it’s too “green” for you; for God’s sake, support it because it preserves what all those tourist come to our great state to see!

  3. The federal case to which you refer is Mingo Logan Coal Co. v US EPA, was issued by the federal trial court in DC on March 23, 2012. Mingo v EPA reversed the EPA's revocation or substantial alteration of a surface coal mining permit after the permit had been granted. The Tennessee Scenic Vistas Protection Act expressly grandfather's in all previously granted permits and therefore no effect on the 13 permits already granted in Tennessee. Therefore the Mingo case is not "on point" and has no implications for the Tennessee Scenic Vistas Protection Act.

    The Tennessee Scenic Vistas Protection Act is a small and reasonable limitation on surface mining that protects our state's iconic mountains. The voters care a great deal about this bill. You might look for ways to make it law instead of looking for "outs" in hallway gossip.


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