New Bill Tackles Unemployment & Abandoned Wells

WASHINGTON, D.C. – These days, skilled workers sit unemployed, while thousands of leaking, orphaned oil and gas wells litter the landscape of the West. An orphaned well is an unreclaimed well for which no owner or operator can be found, or where an owner or operator is unable to plug and reclaim a well. Orphaned […]

Conservation groups: Federal Powder River Basin coal plan violates court order

BLM Plans Govern Coal Mining of 50,000 Acres, 6 Billion Tons of Coal Conservation groups sued the Trump administration today to challenge a massive Powder River Basin coal mining plan that the groups say ignores alternatives to coal, oil and gas leasing and fails to publicly acknowledge the harms from coal combustion, violating federal law […]

Remaining coal mine reclamation could create hundreds of jobs for rural Wyoming

The collapse of the coal industry is devastating small communities across the Western United States, but reclaiming these mined lands quickly could create up to 4,800 full-time equivalent jobs per year in the critical two-to-three-year period after mine closure says a report released today by the Western Organization of Resource Councils (WORC). The report, “Coal […]

Reclaiming & Growing Wyoming’s Future webinar series starts June 17

On Wednesday, June 17 Powder River Basin Resource Council will kick-off its webinar series, Reclaiming & Growing Wyoming’s Future, providing education, tools, and resources available for a planned transition to a new, diversified Wyoming economy. Each session will feature panelists with specific areas of expertise in transitioning resource-dependent communities. In this first webinar, Wyoming’s Reality & […]

Powder River Basin Resource Council Objects to Proposed Ramaco Coal Mine

Powder River Basin Resource Council (Resource Council) and many Sheridan County landowners and concerned citizens filed objections to Ramaco’s proposed Brook Mine this month. The mine is proposed approximately six miles north of Sheridan, in the scenic Tongue River Valley, an area with important agricultural and recreational attributes. Most of the objecting landowners live in […]

Bankruptcies and Inadequate Bonds Threaten Taxpayers, Landowners with Orphan Oil and Gas Wells

In the midst of historically low oil prices and plummeting demand due to coronavirus restrictions, inadequate federal and state reclamation bonding requirements make it easier for deeply indebted oil and gas operators to declare bankruptcy and walk away from orphaned wells en masse. A recent report by the Western Organization of Resource Councils examining the […]

Powder River Breaks January – February 2020

January – February 2020, Volume 48, Number 1 Late last year, the Wyoming Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) told Powder River that they would not be approving Aethon’s permit to discharge over 8 million gallons of polluted oil and gas wastewater a day. DEQ noted that concerns raised by citizens in writing and at public […]

States face massive coal mine cleanup as closures loom, says new report

More than 234 square miles remain unreclaimed in the West after five decades of mining More than a third of all land mined for coal in the Western United States awaits cleanup after a half-century of intensive strip-mining, but a weakening coal industry may be incapable of cleaning it up says a report released today […]

Powder River & WORC Statement in Response to Cloud Peak’s Chapter 11 Bankruptcy Plan

Today in a Delaware bankruptcy court, a federal judge approved Cloud Peak Energy’s plan to get out of bankruptcy. A critical part of the plan is the sale of mines and other property to the Navajo Transitional Energy Company (NTEC), a company wholly owned by the Navajo Nation. In response to the bankruptcy court decision, […]

Powder River Breaks September – October 2019

September – October 2019, Volume 47, Number 5 On Saturday, Nov. 2, Powder River will host its 47th Annual Meeting at the Holiday Inn in Sheridan. This year’s theme, When Coal is No Longer King: A Conversation on Wyoming’s Future, will explore how the state’s economy must change as the coal industry shrinks. Denise Parrish, […]