Coal Lease Programs

IEEFA Research

The Federal Government’s Coal-Leasing Program Is Broken: Here’s How to Fix It

The Federal Government’s Coal-Leasing Program Is Broken: Here’s How to Fix It

Appoint a Price-Setting Commission; Ban Exports; Cancel Some Leases; Eliminate Self-Bonding; Mandate Set-Asides for Mine Clean-up and Miner Pensions; Require Twice-a-Year Audits; Assume Smaller Markets

It’s time for the U.S. to modernize how it manages its publicly owned coal reserves. That’s the essence of comments we’ve filed today with the Department of the Interior as it begins a review of its federal coal-leasing program in the Powder River Basin, a program that has been mismanaged for years at taxpayer expense […]

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Long Legal Fight Ahead on Rollback of Federal Coal-Royalty Reforms

E&E News: Settle in for a long fight over the Trump administration’s decision to scrap reforms for how royalties are calculated for federal fossil fuels. The U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California on Friday laid out the briefing schedule for litigation over the 2017 rollback of the Obama-era Interior Department measure. Defenders […]

February 1, 2018 Read More →

D.C. Appeals Court to Hear Challenge to Coal-Leasing Program

The Hill: A federal appeals court will hear a case brought by environmentalists suing the federal government over the environmental impacts of its coal-leasing program.  The D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals announced Tuesday it will hear an oral argument in March over the lawsuit, brought by the Western Organization of Resource Councils and Friends of the Earth against Interior Department Secretary Ryan Zinke. […]

January 17, 2018 Read More →

California and New Mexico AGs Sue to Restore Closure of Loophole on Coal Taken Off Federal Lands

Law 360: The attorneys general of California and New Mexico have again gone to court to challenge a U.S. Department of the Interior decision to revoke an Obama-era rule tweaking royalty calculations for oil, gas and coal extracted from federal and tribal lands, arguing Tuesday that the regulation was repealed without adequate consideration. California AG […]

October 20, 2017 Read More →

On the Blogs: U.S. Policy Reversal on Federally Owned Coal Will Cost Taxpayers $75 Million a Year

ThinkProgress: The Trump administration’s decision not to close a loophole that allowed energy companies to sell coal, oil, and natural gas at significantly depressed prices will cost taxpayers $75 million per year, a fact the administration itself acknowledged in a Federal Register notice published Monday. The Department of the Interior’s decision to repeal the Obama-era […]

August 7, 2017 Read More →

Citing Taxpayer and Environmental Impacts, Four States Challenge Trump Retro Policy on Federal Coal Leases

Associated Press: Four U.S. states filed a lawsuit Tuesday over President Donald Trump’s decision to restart the sale of coal leases on federal lands, saying the Obama-era block of the leasing program was reversed without studying what’s best for the environment and for taxpayers. The attorneys general of California, New Mexico, New York and Washington, […]

May 10, 2017 Read More →

Federal Royalty Loophole for U.S. Coal Companies Is Back

GQ Magazine: The loophole works like this: Coal companies often mitigate paying royalties they owe the federal government by, for example, selling the coal to their own subsidiary at a low price. The subsidiary company then resells it at a much higher price, but royalties are only paid on the below-market self-dealing. As the Center […]

April 5, 2017 Read More →

U.S. Policy Reversal Brings Back Federal Coal Leases Nobody Wants

Bloomberg News: President Donald Trump is expected to lift a moratorium on federal coal-mining leases Tuesday — and it probably won’t do the industry much good until years after he’s left office. That’s because U.S. coal companies including Peabody Energy Corp. won’t be looking to secure new reserves of the fossil fuel on federal land […]

March 28, 2017 Read More →

Op-Ed: Taxpayers Gain if Federal Coal-Lease Reforms Stand

Meredith Fowlie for The Conversation: The federal coal program is supposed to manage vast federally owned coal reserves, which account for more than 40 percent of U.S. coal production, “for the benefit of current and future generations.” But the program has, for a long time, been criticized for selling taxpayers short. For this and other […]

January 23, 2017 Read More →

On the Blogs: Taxpayers Win in Federal Moratorium on Coal

Jayni Hein for The Hill: In the waning days of the presidential transition, the Department of the Interior is continuing efforts to modernize federal fossil fuel leasing to meet 21st-century needs. The recent release of the federal coal programmatic review scoping report is the latest step by the agency to fulfill its legal mandate to […]

January 19, 2017 Read More →

Utah County Lawsuit to Overturn Federal Coal-Lease Moratorium Faces Market Challenges

From the Associated Press: Two Utah counties have filed a lawsuit challenging a federal halt to granting new coal leases, arguing the moratorium is blocking a mine expansion that could pump millions of dollars into the local economies. The suit marks the first challenge to the moratorium ordered in January by the Obama administration, attorney […]

December 6, 2016 Read More →