Archive: October, 2014

Press release: Arch Coal responds to deficient Otter Creek permit application

October 30, 2014
By Northern Plains Resource Council BILLINGS, Mont. – On Tuesday, Oct. 28, Otter Creek Coal, LLC — a wholly owned subsidiary of Arch Coal, Inc. — submitted a revised application for a permit from the Montana Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) to open the Otter Creek Mine in southeastern Montana. If built, Otter Creek would be the largest new coal mine in the United States. “If this coal mine were built, it would tear up good ranch land and strip mine...
Categories: CoalNewsNorthern Plains Resource Council


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Letter: LR-126 isn’t in line with democracy; vote no – Billings Gazette, Oct. 30, 2014

October 30, 2014
http://billingsgazette.com/news/opinion/mailbag/lr--isn-t-in-line-with-democracy-vote-no/article_0b924b32-f0a3-5932-8963-159249204ef2.html#ixzz3Hdwf6J6D At the very heart of our identity as Americans is that we have a democratically-elected government. Voting is an essential right to us as citizens, and we are very proud of that right. We are a nation that values opportunity and basic fairness. Why does anyone want to limit our access to democracy? LR-126 would eliminate election-day registration, erecting a barrier to democracy. Who dares to deny Montanans the right to vote? I've read the flimsiest reasons for wanting to...
Categories: LegislatureLettersNews


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Press release: New Livingston-area conservation group to hold first annual meeting Oct. 30

October 29, 2014
The newly formed Yellowstone Bend Citizens Council in the Livingston area is holding its first Annual Meeting and the public is invited to attend. Steve Charter, Chair of Northern Plains Resource Council, will talk about ranching and fighting coal companies in the Bull Mountains. Yellowstone Bend Citizens Council's 1st Annual Meeting and Celebration Thursday, October 30 6:30 p.m. Shane Center 415 E. Lewis Street  Steve Charter, Chair of Northern Plains Resource Council, will speak about his experience protecting his land and water from coal development in the...
Categories: AgricultureClean WaterCoalEventsNewsNorthern Plains Resource CouncilOil and gas


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Gazette editorial: Building blocks for Montana’s energy future – Oct. 27, 2014

October 27, 2014
http://billingsgazette.com/news/opinion/editorial/gazette-opinion/gazette-opinion-building-blocks-for-montana-s-energy-future/article_6b2e0d20-1a13-5138-9422-2cb307cfb8d1.html If you want to see a real “all of the above” energy policy, take a look at the five scenarios the Montana Department of Environmental Quality has put out for discussion. The DEQ wrote a white paper with these five hypothetical strategies for Montana to respond to the tougher federal carbon emissions rule that the EPA proposed in June. When DEQ held public meetings earlier this month in Colstrip, Billings and Missoula, around 500 people attended. Since then, the department...
Categories: Climate changeCoalCongressEditorialNewsNewspaper editorial


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Air quality, traffic impacts and health issues from coal trains get new interest – Helena Independent Record, Oct. 25, 2014

October 27, 2014
http://helenair.com/news/local/air-quality-traffic-impacts-and-health-issues-from-coal-trains/article_a17819f8-a58b-57f6-ae5b-091bb247e8c0.html By Al Knauber The Lewis and Clark City-County Board of Health is asking for an opportunity to comment on coal-train traffic when the time comes, and also for more information on trains and train traffic in Lewis and Clark County. The board approved letters to the Surface Transportation Board and to Montana Rail Link when it met last week. Train traffic through Helena has become a community concern because of the delays that can result for traffic and the delivery of emergency...
Categories: CoalNews


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Exclusive: U.S. plans to plug coal royalty loophole padding export profits – Reuters, Oct. 23, 2014

October 23, 2014
http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/10/23/us-usa-coal-royalty-idUSKCN0IC0CC20141023 By Patrick Rucker WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. government is drafting rules designed to close an accounting loophole that in recent years has helped coal companies boost export profits and likely cost taxpayers tens of millions of dollars, people familiar with the plan said. American taxpayers by law are due a 12.5 percent royalty on the sales of millions of tons of coal pulled each year from federal land that mining companies lease. But a Reuters investigation found in 2012 that coal companies were using affiliated...
Categories: CoalLegislatureNews


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Judge strikes down Montana exempt-well rule – Associated Press, Oct. 20, 2014

October 21, 2014
http://billingsgazette.com/news/state-and-regional/montana/judge-strikes-down-montana-exempt-well-rule/article_c079fcb1-74fa-5d65-9ddc-b82f374825f2.html#ixzz3GoJ5pnhn A judge has struck down an administrative rule that allowed developers of residential subdivisions in Montana to drill multiple small, unconnected water wells without permits. District Judge Jeffrey Sherlock said that the rule violated the intent of the Legislature when it set limits on permit exemptions in the 1980s. Sherlock on Friday ordered the Montana Department of Natural Resources and Conservation to come up with a new rule. The case stems from a long-running dispute over whether developers of subdivisions have used...
Categories: Clean WaterCourtsLegislatureNews


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Letter: Who watches the Board of Oil and Gas? – Billings Gazette, Oct. 19, 2014

October 20, 2014
http://billingsgazette.com/news/opinion/mailbag/who-watches-the-board-of-oil-and-gas/article_ba83c0e8-4656-5f6e-99a8-cd365ba490d7.html#ixzz3Gb4km9Uy Montana is a state of proud tradition. Simple, but important truths. Leave the gate the way you found it. Whiskey is for drinking, water is for fighting. Take care of your own. So when it comes to understanding why we relinquish so much authority to the Board of Oil and Gas I am a bit confused. Currently they have no stated plan to regulate hydraulic fracking, no requirements for closed-loop systems to deal with disposal of wastewater and chemicals and the...
Categories: LegislatureOil and gas


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Groups working hard to keep same-day voter registration – Lee State Bureau, Oct. 16, 2014

October 16, 2014
http://billingsgazette.com/news/state-and-regional/montana/groups-working-hard-to-keep-same-day-voter-registration/article_24bf896b-02e7-57c8-81cb-c87b85b194f2.html By Mike Dennison HELENA — Progressive groups are putting money and shoe leather into defeating a Republican-sponsored ballot measure that would end Election Day voter registration in Montana. Yet the campaign for the measure, known as Legislative Referendum 126, is pretty much nonexistent. A group called the Montana Equality Project, formed in February to support LR-126, hasn’t reported raising or spending a single cent for the campaign. Meanwhile, the coalition of groups campaigning against it — dubbed Montanans for Free and Fair Elections...
Categories: LegislatureNewsNorthern Plains Resource Council


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Citizens appeal for transparency on gas flaring, oil spills – The Last Best News, Oct. 16, 2014

October 16, 2014
http://lastbestnews.com/site/2014/10/citizens-appeal-for-transparency-on-gas-flaring-oil-spills/ By Ed Kemmick Two members of the Northern Plains Resource Council appealed to the Montana Board of Oil and Gas Conservation on Wednesday to make information on oil spills and gas flaring more readily accessible to the public. “We thought perhaps you could take a look at what North Dakota does,” Deborah Hanson told the board during one of its regular meetings in Billings. Hanson, of Miles City, and Bill Hand, of Nye, said Montana could also take some pointers from Wyoming,...
Categories: Landowner RightsNewsNorthern Plains Resource CouncilOil and gas


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NORTHERN PLAINS RESOURCE COUNCIL
220 South 27th Street, Suite A
Billings, Montana 59101
(406) 248-1154
info@northernplains.org