Utah high court turns back coal mine challenge

Associated Press

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) - Utah's high court says state regulators acted properly in issuing a permit for a coal mine outside Bryce Canyon National Park.

The Utah Supreme Court ruled against a challenge brought by the Sierra Club and other environmental groups. They said Utah failed to assess the environmental impacts of a strip mine operating a dozen miles from a corner of the national park.

Justices issued a 22-page decision Tuesday saying regulators satisfied state law with a plan to monitor the coal mine for any water pollution that gets into local creeks.

Alton Coal Development LLC has been operating the mine on 440 acres of private land for more than a year and is seeking permission to expand on surrounding federal range lands.

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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