Press Release: ELPC Responds to Peabody Energy’s Reorganization Plan that Fails to Commit to End Flawed Self-Bonding For Its Mine Reclamation Costs

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 23, 2016

STATEMENT BY HOWARD A. LEARNER
Environmental Law & Policy Center

ST. LOUIS – Howard Learner, an attorney for the Environmental Law & Policy Center, said in response to Peabody Energy’s proposed plan of reorganization filed late yesterday in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in St. Louis:

“We’re disappointed that Peabody’s plan fails to commit to replace its flawed self-bonding for mine reclamation with real financial commitments including surety bonds. In fact, the company’s first proposed reorganization plan dodges the issue and unfairly risks shifting the costs for Peabody’s environmental cleanup responsibilities onto the public. A “feasible” reorganization plan for Peabody to emerge from bankruptcy should not include continued self-bonding of mine reclamation costs.”

“Mine reclamation laws were put in place almost 40 years ago to help protect the public and ensure that mining companies like Peabody fulfill their environmental responsibilities. Peabody should be required to live up to its mine reclamation responsibilities and assure that it will not saddle taxpayers with these costs.”

“The bankruptcy process requires a full, practical and open discussion of a company’s plan for reorganization. That is particularly necessary where public rights and corporate responsibilities are involved as they are here with Peabody.”

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