Harrisburg – The Senate Environmental Resources and Energy (ERE) Committee took action today on a proposed critical mineral impact study and a bill that redirects funding toward postmining water clean-up, Chairman Gene Yaw (R-23) said.
Senate Bill 1038 would redirect civil penalties collected for water violations related to coal mining under the Clean Streams Law to the Reclamation Fee Operations and Management (O&M) Trust Account. Doing so would provide more funding for ongoing clean-up of legacy coal mining sites, of which Pennsylvania has one of the largest inventories nationwide.
“This bill simply ensures fines collected for post-mining pollution discharge will continue to support reclamation of former mining sites,” Yaw said.
The committee also unanimously approved Senate Resolution 229, which directs the Joint State Government Commission to study the economic, environmental and health impacts of the critical mineral industry in Pennsylvania.
“Pennsylvania stands poised for a manufacturing renaissance, if only we can harness the power of newly-discovered reclamation processes that would make mining for these materials safer for the environment,” Yaw said. “Doing so would end our reliance on Chinese imports, where mineral extraction is unregulated and dangerous.”
The bills now move to the full Senate for consideration.
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