U.S. Senator Mike Enzi, R-Wyo., didn’t mince words today while defending Wyoming’s coal industry during a public meeting in Casper over the Bureau of Land Management’s (BLM) review of the federal coal program. Pointing out the critical ways that coal supports families and communities in Wyoming, Enzi characterized the BLM’s potential reform of the coal program as an economic attack on the country.
“Welcome to Wyoming. You are here in the state that provides most of the energy for this nation; you're in the state that's been devastated by recent policies and you're now considering more damage,” Enzi said, addressing his comments to the BLM. “Hundreds have been laid off at the coal mines and that's resulted in thousands being laid off on the railroad. That impact also affects the associated businesses and then spreads to the regular services and stores and restaurants, and costs jobs for those employees, too. It's time to take your foot off the gas pedal of economic destruction. It's time to apply the brake of common sense. No economy stands by itself. This economy has an effect on our nation as a whole.”
The hearing was the first in a series hosted by the BLM to hear comments from the public over its potential overhaul of the federal coal program, a multiyear effort that will likely cost millions of dollars and potentially disrupt many aspects of the coal industry.
You can read Enzi’s full statement as prepared for delivery here.