“Blackjewel will also have six months to transfer another 171 permits in Kentucky,
Tennessee, Virginia and West Virginia to potential buyers. Some transfers have
stalled because purchasers haven’t secured the surety bonds necessary to
ensure mine cleanup, leaving open the question of whether these, too, will be
left for states to deal with.
‘It just seems like they’re kicking the can down the road,’ said Mary Cromer,
deputy director of Appalachian Citizens’ Law Center, which represented a coalition of citizens’ groups in the case.
‘For some of these permits, it’s pretty clear that it’s unlikely that transfer is ever
going to happen, so this just another 180 days where conditions continue to
With Blackjewel’s severe financial distress, the revocation of permits is ‘the best
possible solution,’ Cromer said. But Kentucky’s reclamation fund and
Blackjewel’s surety providers will be under pressure for absorbing the cleanup