Patriot Coal Negotiates Comprehensive Environmental Settlement
Patriot Coal Corporation said that it has entered into a consent decree with the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection (WVDEP) to resolve claims under the Clean Water Act relating to Patriot’s mining activities in West Virginia.
“Consistent with our corporate mission to be a good steward of the environment and our philosophy of maintaining a constructive dialogue with federal and state regulatory authorities, we entered into good faith negotiations which resulted in this settlement. We believe the consent decree is a fair and reasonable resolution of issues relating to former Magnum properties acquired by Patriot in 2008, and serves the interests of both the public and our stockholders,” said Patriot Chief Executive Officer Richard M. Whiting.
As a result of the negotiated settlement, the Company has agreed to implement an enhanced environmental management system reflecting “best practices”, including audits and electronic tracking and reporting, and to complete several stream restoration projects in consultation with WVDEP. To resolve claims related to the consent decree, the Company will pay $6.5 million in civil penalties, to be divided between EPA and WVDEP.
The consent decree has been filed with the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of West Virginia, is subject to a public comment period and must be approved by the Court before it becomes effective.