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Mining

The Regulation of Coal Combustion Residuals

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Western Governors' Association Policy Resolution 2017-07: Western Governors agree with the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) assessment in 2015 that coal combustion residuals (CCRs) should be regulated as non-hazardous waste under subtitle D of the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA). Western Governors support safe, beneficial use of CCRs and call on EPA to work with states and stakeholders to develop a national framework for advancing beneficial use.  Western Governors also support legislative changes to amend subtitle D of RCRA to allow CCR permit programs adopted by states to operate in an efficient, flexible, and protective fashion – in lieu of a federal program.

Financial Assurance Regulation

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Western Governors' Association Policy Resolution 2017-06:Reclamation of western mines and facilities managed by other industries is needed primarily to protect adjacent waters. It is therefore appropriate and consistent with Congressional intent to recognize the states’ primary role in regulating impact of facility reclamation – including associated financial assurance requirements. Western Governors believe that states have financial assurance regulatory programs in place that are working well and they should not be preempted or duplicated by any EPA program.

Cleaning Up Abandoned Mines in the West

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Western Governors' Association Policy Resolution 2016-07: Western Governors call on Congress to legally protect volunteer remediating parties, including local and state government agencies, which conduct clean up, from becoming legally responsible under section 301(a) and section 402 of the Clean Water Act (CWA) for any continuing discharges from the abandoned mine site after completion of a cleanup project.  They also call on Congress and Federal agencies to consider legislative and administrative remedies to address potential Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA) and Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) liabilities.

National Minerals Policy

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Western Governors’ Association Policy Resolution 2015-09: The Governors support building on the 1970 Mining and Minerals Policy Act with legislation and policies that unlock our mineral potential and ensure access to metals critical to U.S. economic and national security, in part by addressing the critical issue of permitting delays and the timely processing of mining permit applications.