EARTHWORKS

USFS Mining Rule Proposal

USFS Mining Rule Proposal
Bush admin would weaken existing rules

Published: June 20, 2008

By: Lauren Pagel

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USFS Mining Rule Proposal:

Bush administration would weaken existing rules governing mining in National Forests

At a time when Congress is attempting to reform the badly outdated 1872 Mining Law, the Forest Service initiated new regulations -- under section 228 of the Code of Federal Regulations -- that would speed development of more new mines on National Forests, regardless of the effects on clean water and air, wildlife habitat, Native American sacred sites, and popular places to hunt, fish, hike, camp, and enjoy America's backcountry.

With this proposal the Bush Administration would actually cause more harm to our public lands and water than the original mining regulations -- which were written over 30 years ago and have contributed to the pollution of 40% of the headwaters of western watersheds.

THE PROPOSED RULE WOULD

POTENTIAL REAL WORLD IMPACTS

EXACTLY THE OPPOSITE OF WHAT IS NEEDED
With metals prices at or near record highs, and an associated surge in claim staking and mineral development, the Bush Administration should be proposing a rule that allows for more oversight of mining in our forests to protect the important values of our public lands -- like water and wildlife.

Instead, this proposal would allow for less oversight. And the proposed change would occur with no environmental review and very little public comment -- for the industry that is the nations largest toxic polluter according to the Environmental Protection Agency.


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Tagged with: bush, 1872 mining law

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