Carol Raulston, a spokeswoman for the National Mining Association (NMA) in Washington DC, wrote in a statement that “based on analyses by outside experts retained by NMA, stream function (in this case the stream’s ability to provide sufficient food sources for fish, birds, etc.) is not altered by the mining activity”.
Judge Jackson did not rule on the scientific questions raised by Mingo Logan; the EPA and Earthjustice are hoping that the appeal court will do so, and will put an end to the doubt cast on evidence that they say is “solid”.
With the US presidential elections fast approaching there is little time to waste. “Mitt Romney has been candid about his feelings on environmental regulation — he wants to reduce the power of the EPA,” says Bernhardt. “I don’t see a Romney administration helping to put teeth into the EPA’s ability to protect the environment.”