Clean water. Economic growth. Clean air. Opportunities for employment. A healthy, stable, safe environment. Individual financial stability. These are not mutually exclusive concepts. The issue does not have to be black and white. There are compromises -shades of grey- that are necessary for this country and the world. Regulations on pollution in coal country, or anywhere in this nation, are essential not only to the environment and the health and safety of individual citizens, but also for the future of the fossil fuel industry and improving the quality of life for the impoverished regions of our country now and for years to come.
The fossil fuel industry has contributed to the growth of this nation and has provided livelihoods for many citizens. But the negative impacts these fuels have on the environment are now undeniable. Regulations of these industries are essential both on a small scale, ensuring safe water supplies to all American citizens, and on a global scale, reducing emissions of greenhouse gases to counteract the negative effects of anthropogenic climate change.
This rule is projected to restore the water quality of hundreds of miles of streams which are tributaries to protected, major waterways essential to commerce and health. Furthermore, the rule is projected to improve reforestation (which will help counteract the damages of greenhouse gas emissions) of thousands of acres every year for the next two decades. These are wonderful and critical goals that should be a priority to this country.