To the editor:
In my 25 years of service to the mining industry (more than 18 with the Colorado Mining Association), I can say – without hesitation – that this year’s elections are the most important that rural and coal mining communities throughout Colorado and the United States have ever faced.
The Obama administration and even some of our elected leaders have launched a war on the coal industry through initiatives designed to curtail or even end coal use. The Environmental Protection Agency’s regulations may force the retirement of nearly 25percent of current electricity generation served by coal.
Here in Colorado, lawmakers have cited EPA initiatives as the basis for enacting House Bill 10-1365, which will cause up to 4 million tons in production losses, much of which will be felt in Northwest Colorado.
It is vital that we know where the candidates stand on the issues.
Bob Rankin is one such candidate who will stand up and fight for rural communities in Colorado and support the continued use of coal. He will also support responsible mining of all our minerals throughout Colorado.
Support for our public schools is important and supporting the continued use of coal is essential to that very worthy goal. Much of the production of coal comes from federal lands here in Colorado and, as a result, the coal industry paid over $59 million in royalties in 2011 (second only to Wyoming).
Half of that money comes back to Colorado to support public education.
We know where Bob Rankin stands. He is a champion of coal and responsible resource development.
Stuart A. Sanderson
Colorado Mining Association