|Federal Agency Withdraws Hard Rock Mining Rule
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will not adopt final regulations for its proposed financial responsibility requirements for hard rock mining operations for metals and non-metallic fuel minerals that SFAA opposed. Surety bonds would have been accepted to meet the requirement and SFAA noted that the bond requirement could have been duplicative of existing state and federal reclamation bonding requirements. We also opposed provisions that would have permitted direct actions on the bond. Other stakeholders also noted the potential for duplicative financial responsibility requirements and the potential problems with the direct action provisions. The EPA agreed with these concerns and will not move forward with its proposal.