Coal Tattoo

Here’s some leftover news that I didn’t get to from last week:

U.S. District Judge John T. Copenhaver Jr. has ruled that a previous settlement with the federal Environmental Protection Agency doesn’t insulate Massey Energy from citizen lawsuits over new water pollution violations at the company’s operations.

I’ve posted a copy of Judge Copenhaver’s decision here.

Basically, the judge ruled that the EPA deal — including a $20 million fine paid by Massey — covered only violations that were specifically spelled out in the agency’s agreement with Massey. Future violations, like those alleged by the new citizen group lawsuit brought by the Sierra Club and others earlier this year. Massey had argued that was not the case, in seeking to have the new suit thrown out.