WildEarth Guardians

A Force for Nature

Over 135,000 people call on Secretary Jewell to establish moratorium on Powder River coal

Follows letter calling for a moratorium and review of the federal coal leasing program

Additional Contacts:

Josh Nelson, CREDO campaign manager, 202-550-6175

Joe Smyth, Greenpeace Communications, 831-566-5647, joe.smyth@greenpeace.org

Washington, DC - WildEarth Guardians, CREDO, and Greenpeace delivered over 135,000 petitions to Interior Secretary Sally Jewell today calling for a moratorium on new coal leasing in the Powder River Basin. The petitions follow an April 15 letter to Secretary Jewell signed by the leaders of 21 environmental, public health, consumer rights and community organizations calling for a moratorium and comprehensive review of the federal coal leasing program.

"More coal leasing by the Interior Department only threatens to push our nation deeper into climate debt. The fact is, we can't strip mine our way to a safe climate. We're simply calling on Interior Secretary Jewell to carry out our nation's commitment to safeguarding the climate," said Jeremy Nichols, WildEarth Guardians Climate and Energy Program Director.

The petitions and letter highlight the many problems of the current federal coal leasing program, including the massive greenhouse gas emissions unlocked by leasing publicly owned coal, concerns that the program amounts to a major fossil fuel subsidy for companies like Peabody and Arch, and increased efforts by coal mining companies to export Powder River Basin coal to foreign markets.

“It doesn’t take an MBA to know that giving our coal away for pennies on the dollar so coal companies can torch our planet is a bad deal,” said Josh Nelson, CREDO campaign manager. “But now that we have a successful CEO leading Interior, we hope that the Obama administration will finally put an end to this unmitigated environmental disaster and taxpayer rip-off.”


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