Submission Number: FD-30186-000041
Received: 6/10/2015 1:54:29 PM
Commenter: charlotte bowenhollow
Agency: Surface Transportation Board
Initiative: Tongue River Railroad
Attachments: No Attachments
Thank you for taking comments from citizens.
Concerns about reclamation, which does not happen when and where it should, have been the specific impetus for my caring about coal mining. I believe it is well documented that numerous mining operations, including Arch, are woefully neglectful in fulfilling their reclamation commitments and responsibilities.
When I learned that aquifers are repeatedly compromised and often polluted due to coal mining operations I realized that aquifers and other groundwater sources were my primary issues and source of worry. The US population is using aquifer and groundwater at an alarming and increasing rate; consider CA and TX (the Ogallala, for instance). Floods do not refill aquifers because the waters move too fast and often that water is toxic from numerous sources encountered on the ground.
The thought that coal companies have the right, if granted, to tear up a functioning river valley, as well as, add harmful materials to all the various water sources (aquifer, groundwater and river) seems unwise, unfair and unwarranted. China is moving away from coal power, the coal is not paid for at a fair rate, the waters are never tested prior to mining (so reclamation, if it ever occurs, will not be based on reality) and the country is experiencing drastic water shortages. Then there are carbon emissions to consider.
Please do not allow this railroad to be built. It will cause harm to so many in the short and long runs.