"CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- West Virginia regulators should examine whether hundreds of additional abandoned coal mine sites need new water pollution treatment under a legal settlement announced last week, a member of a Department of Environmental Protection advisory committee said Wednesday.
Mining engineer John Morgan urged the Special Reclamation Fund Advisory Council to look into the matter in the wake of a deal between DEP and the West Virginia Highlands Conservancy to set pollution discharge limits at certain abandoned sites.
The deal, which still needs approval from U.S. District Judge John T. Copenhaver Jr., applies to nearly 200 sites across the state, but Morgan pointed out the Special Reclamation program also includes roughly another 350 mines that have been abandoned since the federal strip mine law was passed in 1977.
'I'm just trying to be sure there's nothing missed,' said Morgan, who represents environmental groups on the advisory council. 'Do we have monitoring on all of those sites?'"