After more than 20 years of dormancy, the Pacific Coast Coal Company is trying to resume pit-coal mining at the John Henry No. 1 Coal Mine in Black Diamond, WA. Tell the Washington Department of Ecology to protect our waterways and communities from coal pollution.
PCCC has applied for a wastewater discharge permit under the Clean Water Act, administered by the Department of Ecology. This permit sets limits for chemicals and contaminants that the mine operation discharges to public waterways. Ecology is accepting comments on this application until they issue a draft permit, which is expected in mid-November.
Washington currently has no active coal mines, and we can’t allow this one to reopen. The John Henry coal mine would cause 250,000 tons of carbon pollution each year, the equivalent of 51,000 cars. And PCCC is a known polluter, responsible for pollution local creeks and lakes with phosphorus, copper, and other pollutants; illegally disposing of waste; and failing to clean up waste at the mine.
If the mine reopens, PCCC would discharge stormwater and mine dewatering water into Ginder Lake, Mud Lake Creek, and Lake 12. The project will cause harmful environmental impacts to local water quality, hydrology, and air quality – risking public health, salmon, and reversing decades of progress towards transitioning Washington away from dirty fossil fuels.
Ecology has the ability to deny this permit. Ask them to protect our state and our public waters from dirty and dangerous coal by denying a permit that would violate State Water Quality Standards and the Clean Water Act, as well as flying in the face of local and State policies on climate change and fossil fuels.