Murkowski Votes to Protect Alaska’s Coal Mining Industry

U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, today voted in support of H.J. Res. 38, the Congressional Review Act (CRA) disapproval resolution to overturn the Obama administration’s so-called “Stream Protection Rule” (SPR). The resolution passed the Senate by a vote of 54-45 and now goes to President Trump for his signature.

“In drafting this regulation, the Obama administration ignored the input and recommendations of states and stakeholders, and subverted the law to meet its policy objective—keeping coal in the ground,” Murkowski said. “Left intact, this rule would have cost us jobs and revenues, from Alaska to Appalachia. By overturning it, we will avoid those significant impacts, and help ensure a continued supply of reliable, affordable energy for Americans all across the country.”

Before the vote, Murkowski delivered a statement on the Senate floor explaining her opposition to the rule.

LAM Coal Pic
Click on the above image to listen to Murkowski’s full speech

By name alone, the ‘Stream Protection Rule’ may sound pretty innocent and pretty well-intentioned, but as we have heard and as we will hear throughout this debate, the reality is really different,” Murkowski said.

In March 2016, Murkowski chaired a field hearing of the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources in Fairbanks, Alaska where Lorali Simon, who works for the Usibelli Coal Mine, testified that the SPR “will likely kill all coal development in Alaska.” Simon also highlighted how coal provides good-paying jobs and a reliable, low cost source of energy in Interior Alaska for local communities, military bases, and other businesses such as the Alaska Railroad.

Murkowski is chairman of the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources. An archived video of her floor statement on the SPR disapproval resolution can be found here.

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