Congressman Gary Palmer (AL-06), a member of the Oversight and Government Reform Subcommittee on Interior, attended a hearing Tuesday on the Department of the Interior’s (DOI) recently proposed Stream Protection Rule and took a stand against it citing how it would affect Alabama coal miners.
Palmer claims the rule, which regulates surface coal mining operations in and near streams, would have significant negative effects on energy production.
“Coal Miners are not made-up stats, they are real people,” Palmer said. “The DOI needs to come to Alabama and talk to some of the coal mining families, particularly the kids, who are facing the prospect of Christmas with no presents; or young people who are withdrawing from college. Instead, the Department of the Interior has frozen out states and industry in the rule-making process.”
The original version of the rule, passed in 1979, created a buffer zone around year-round streams near mining operations. According to Palmer, the new, more stringent rule would have significant negative economic effects. Estimates say it could cost up to 280,000 Americans their jobs.
You can watch Congressman Palmer’s questions at the hearing below: