In an astonishing display of hypocrisy, even for the political arena, administration officials are pretending that not changing the mountaintop removal policy is a change in policy.
Read the EPA News Release on Mountaintop Removal for a 1984ish double dip into double-speak.
The Obama administration is not going to stop the coal corporations from destroying mountains. It is going to "strengthen oversight and regulation." In other words, the paperwork must be done right before you can destroy the environment to dig out the coal that adds to much to global warming. So far the Obama administration has approved 46 permits. Think of it: 46 entire mountains blasted to rubble to get the coal underneath. How is that for a little more than 100 days in office?
“The steps we are taking today are a firm departure from the previous Administration's approach to mountaintop coal mining, which failed to protect our communities, water, and wildlife in Appalachia,” said Interior Secretary Ken Salazar. “By toughening enforcement standards, by looking for common-sense improvements to our rules and regulations, and by coordinating our efforts with other agencies, we will immediately make progress toward reducing the environmental impacts of mountaintop coal mining.”
The Obama camp thus distinguished themselves from those evil Bush Republican approvers of blasting off mountaintops.
Can we blast ancient mountains to smithereens while protecting "our communities, water, and wildlife in Appalachia?”
YES WE CAN!
See also: EarthJustice on Mountaintop Coal Mining decision "What the administration is proposing today is essentially rearranging the bureaucratic deck chairs on the disastrous ship that is mountaintop removal."