Three House members have reintroduced a bill to prohibit EPA from retroactively revoking Clean Water Act Section 404 permits, as the agency did with the Spruce Mine in West Virginia.
That decision was recently upheld by federal courts in Washington, D.C.
According to an article in the West Virginia Record, "McKinley introduced similar legislation in the previous two Congresses."
In the last Congress, McKinley's bill made it out of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee but did not get a vote in the full House.
EPA has sent the following notice to the Federal Register for publication:
ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY
Notice of Status Update on the Proposed Determination for the Pebble Deposit Area, Southwest Alaska
AGENCY: Environmental Protection Agency.
ACTION: Notice of status update.
SUMMARY: On July 21, 2014, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) published in the Federal Register a Notice of Proposed Determination, under Section 404(c) of the Clean Water Act, to restrict the use of certain waters in the South Fork Koktuli River, North Fork Koktuli River, and Upper Talarik Creek watersheds in Southwest Alaska as disposal sites for dredged or fill material associated with mining the Pebble deposit, a copper-, gold-, and molybdenum-bearing ore body. On September 19, 2014, EPA published in the Federal Register a notice extending the time period to either withdraw the Proposed Determination or to prepare the Recommended Determination until no later than February 4, 2015. As part of ongoing litigation brought by the Pebble Limited Partnership, on November 25, 2014, a Federal District Court Judge issued a preliminary injunction that requires EPA to stop all work connected to the 404(c) proceeding, including reviewing and considering public comments. EPA is complying with the court’s order and as such is not taking any steps to withdraw the Proposed Determination or to prepare a Recommended Determination while the preliminary injunction is in place.
Dated: January 21, 2015.
Dennis J. McLerran,
EPA Region 10.
[FR Doc. 2015-01701 Filed 01/28/2015 at 8:45 am; Publication Date: 01/29/2015]