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Sep 28, 2012


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Greg Hallsten
Director's Office


DEQ to Hold Public Scoping Meetings on Proposed Expansion of the Rosebud Coal Mine


Helena -- The Montana Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) is preparing an environmental impact statement (EIS) for Western Energy Company’s proposed Area F expansion of the Rosebud Coal Mine located west of Colstrip, Montana.

Approval of the surface mine permit application for Area F would result in an expansion of the mine operation. DEQ deemed Western Energy’s surface mine permit application complete on August 1, 2012. The proposed Area F permit area is owned or controlled by Western Energy and encompasses approximately 6,746 acres. It would add coal reserves to the existing Rosebud Mine and extend mine life by an estimated 19 years.

The first phase in preparing an EIS is to conduct "scoping." The purpose of scoping is to identify the environmental issues associated with the proposed project. DEQ is asking the public for comments to help determine the scope of the analysis to be contained in the EIS.

The DEQ is hosting two open houses to provide the public with information on the proposed project and an opportunity to submit written scoping comments directly to DEQ personnel. The open houses will take place on Tuesday, October 16th at the Isabel Bills Community Center, 520 Poplar Drive, in Colstrip. The first open house will be from 2:30 p.m. until 4:30 p.m., and the second will be from 6:30 p.m. until 8:30 p.m. At the beginning of each open house, Western Energy representatives will present a brief project overview.

Scoping comments must be received by November 5, 2012. Written comments should be submitted to Greg Hallsten, DEQ Director's Office, PO Box 200901, Helena, MT 59620-0901. Comments may also be e-mailed to

The DEQ will make reasonable accommodations for persons with disabilities who wish to participate in the scoping open house. If you require an accommodation, please contact Greg Hallsten at 406-444-3276 or For more information about coal permitting visit the DEQ website at

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