Western govs say states best regulate coal ash

Helena, MT – Western governors are telling the Obama administration that regulation of coal ash waste is best done by the states.

The Western Governor's Association is resisting a move by the Environmental Protection Agency to reclassify coal ash as hazardous. The EPA delayed that decision late last year. Doing so would limit where it could be sent for disposal.

Montana Gov. Brian Schweitzer, chairman of the governor's group, says the EPA move would undercut what he described as effective regulation by Western states.

The governors say the reclassification would prevent the materials' use in road construction and other purposes.

Utah Gov. Gary Herbert says coal-fired electric generation in the West would also be hurt, which would cost ratepayers more money.