Coal

Todd Hatton, WKMS

Anything is possible, but it seems unlikely that a Senate bill to abolish state mine safety inspections will pass the General Assembly this year. Legislators are scheduled to return to Frankfort next week for one day before concluding this year’s regular session.

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The Senate's Republican leader says a Supreme Court ruling that delays a key element of President Barack Obama's strategy to fight climate change will likely push a final decision on the issue to the next president.

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State inspections of Kentucky’s underground mines would be eliminated under a bill approved by the state senate on Thursday. Supporters say the measure reduces duplication of federal mine assessments. 

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Nearly $70 million in federal funds is now available for coal mining communities across the country. The Appalachian Regional Commission and the U.S. Economic Development Administration announced the funding on Thursday. 

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Environmental groups are expressing concern over the Tennessee Valley Authority’s Draft Environmental Impact Statement that looks at closing 10 coal ash impoundments. The Southern Environmental Law Center, Sierra Club Beyond Coal, and nine other groups have partnered to comment on the draft, which assesses closure-by-removal and closure-in-place.

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A bill that would eliminate state inspections of Kentucky coal mines is headed to the full senate. The measure was heard Wednesday in the Senate Natural Resources Committee.

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A bill under consideration in Kentucky’s General Assembly would eliminate state mine inspections, a move which a safety advocate says would have adverse effects on mine safety in Kentucky.

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Leaders from the state’s coal-producing regions want counties to receive a greater share of coal severance tax revenue. Revenue from the severance tax is split evenly between the state and counties and has declined as a result of Kentucky’s flagging coal industry.

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Kentucky's Energy and Environment Cabinet secretary is not expecting any short term rebound in the eastern Kentucky coalfields. Charles Snavely appeared before the senate’s natural resources committee this week. 

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Kentucky’s coal industry shed more jobs and production during the last quarter of 2015, according to new data released today.

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