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Mountaintop removal ban killed in Tenn. Senate

March 20th, 2013 3:55 pm by Staff Report

Mountaintop removal ban killed in Tenn. Senate

NASHVILLE — A measure to ban mountaintop removal coal mining in Tennessee is dead this session.

The proposal sponsored by Democratic Sen. Lowe Finney of Jackson failed in the Senate, Energy, Agriculture and Natural Resources Committee on Wednesday for lack of a motion.

The legislation is similar to others that failed in the past. It would ban any mining that alters ridgelines more than 2,000 feet above sea level. Supporters call the measure the "Scenic Vistas Protection Act."

Opponents worry the proposal is a first step toward ending Tennessee coal mining. Members of the mining industry crowded into the hearing room on Wednesday to oppose the bill.

Finney says he plans to bring it back next year.

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