This just in from the fine folks over at The Associated Press:
West Virginia’s Legislature could soon consider a permanent ban on new coal slurry injection wells that pump liquid coal waste underground.
An interim subcommittee studying the issue endorsed the necessary legislative proposal Monday. The House-Senate panel also included a tax break in the measure to encourage alternatives to coal slurry injections.
Coal operators sometimes store wastewater from washing coal by pumping it into used-up mines. But a number of coalfield residents fear this slurry is poisoning their water supplies.
State regulators have blocked new injection sites since 2009. The proposed legislation would add that moratorium to state law.
The measure would also reduce income taxes for operators that reduce or dry out the slurry they produce.