|President Trump signing the Stream Protection |
Rule repeal (Interior Department photo)
The department's Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement, which spent nearly the entire eight years of Obama's presidency working on the rule, on Dec. 19 issued a final version with new limits on mining near waterways. In early February Congress voted to kill the rule. Trump signed the resolution Feb. 16.
The statement of 7,000 lost jobs contradicted OSMRE's "analysis during the Obama administration that the rule, which enhanced water quality and monitoring requirements at coal mines, would actually create a few hundred jobs in reclamation," Brown writes.
A 2015 National Mining Association-backed study by consulting firm Ramboll Environ "estimated as many as 77,000 coal mining jobs would be lost—a figured quoted by lawmakers after Trump signed their resolution repealing the rule," Brown writes. Glenn Kessler, a Washington Post fact checker, "said the 77,000 estimate was 'simply not credible' because it relied on a small sample of coal operators already vehemently opposed to the rule and outdated coal employment numbers," Brown writes. (Read more)