August 3, 2018 - U.S. Senators Steve Daines, John Barraso, Shelley Moore Capito and James Inhofe introduced a bill clearing the way for construction of the Millennium Bulk Terminal, which would create hundreds of Montana jobs by expanding trade opportunities for Montana coal. The legislation clarifies that Section 401 of the Clean Water Act cannot be used as a weapon to prohibit Montanas exportation of clean and reliable coal to the nations allies in the Asia Pacific Region.
Montana is rich in natural resources and has the capability of supplying energy not only for our nation, but to the entire the world, Daines said. This bill will ensure our states abundant resources are no longer gridlocked by activist bureaucrats and will spur highpaying Montana jobs, empower our Tribes, and importantly, strengthen our national security."
There is a large demand for Montanas clean coal in Asia. Despite this, the State of Washington has blocked the construction of the Millennium Bulk Terminal, which is the point of access for Montana coal to make its way to Asia.
Earlier this month, Daines pushed for congressional action to stop the abuse of power by Washington State to construct the terminal and get Montanas clean coal into Asias markets.
Opening the terminal would allow coal from Montanas Decker Mine, Spring Creek Mine and the Crows Big Metal Project to have access to Asian markets. An operating terminal would create an estimated 300 to 400 high-paying mining jobs most of them in Montana.
Statement of Support:
Everett King, President & CEO, Lighthouse Resources: When a project meets all water quality standards, the projects water quality certification should be awarded. Unfortunately, this was not the case with our coal export project in Washington state. This legislation ensures that Clean Water Act decisions remain about water quality and are not used for an improper purpose. In addition, the proposed legislation will bring greater clarity for the development of the port for other non-coal products.
Tim Fox, Attorney General of Montana: Montana is a commodity-rich state and our businesses need reliable access to overseas markets. Sen. Daines legislation is an important step in depoliticizing the environmental review process for export terminals. By leveling the playing field among the states, we can maintain robust environmental protection standards while also ensuring Montanans can ship their goods to customers around the world.
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