Washington, DC – Kentucky is the third largest coal producing state in the country, but Yarmuth says the state's rivers and streams are also a critical natural resource. So when the Office of Surface Mining asked the Environmental Protection Agency to allow companies to mine near those streams, Yarmuth objected, pointing out they would never get this passed after January.
"The way they're trying to go about this at the last minute, bypassing the l! egislative system is indicative of the fact that they can't get it through and they don't have a legitimate case to make. If they have a legitimate case to make they wouldn't be trying to do it this way they'd come to congress and ask to change the law." (:16)
Governor Beshear and Yarmuth have both sent letters to the EPA urging the agency to enforce the existing guidelines.
Mining industry officials say they just want clarification of those guidelines.