Rep. McKinley: Supreme Court's Denial to Review EPA Powers Sends ‘Chilling Effect'

Washington, D.C.—Today, the U.S. Supreme Court announced it would not review a 2013 Appeals Court decision that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) did not exceed its powers when it stripped the Spruce No. 1 Mine of a permit for a large mountaintop mine in West Virginia.

“This sends a chilling effect to companies wanting to invest and grow when the EPA is allowed to retroactively revoke permits,” said Rep. McKinley. “Invalidating a permit years after it is issued sets a bad precedent for not only mining, but any business that relies on permits to operate. How many banks would loan money to a manufacturer or a small business knowing that the EPA could do the same?”

“For the past five years, the EPA has been given unprecedented power by the Obama Administration,” added McKinley. “This puts billions of dollars in public and private investments along with thousands of jobs in jeopardy.”

Arch Coal filed an appeal accusing the EPA of asserting a sweeping new power which 27 states rallied behind.

“It’s disturbing when the EPA bases its decision to revoke a permit on the Obama Administration’s ideological warfare rather than the sound engineering of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers,” said McKinley. “Permits should be based on science, not ideology. The EPA should not be overstepping its bounds to conflict with the Army Corps of Engineers.”

Last year, Rep. McKinley introduced legislation (H.R. 524) which clarifies the EPA does not have the authority to veto a permit once it’s been issued by the Secretary of the Army.