| Home > 106th Congressional Bills > S. 2300 (rs) To amend the Mineral Leasing Act to increase the maximum acreage of Federal leases for coal that may be held by an entity in any 1 State. [Reported in Senate] ...
S. 2300 (rs) To amend the Mineral Leasing Act to increase the maximum acreage of Federal leases for coal that may be held by an entity in any 1 State. [Reported in Senate] ...
IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
October 6, 2000
Referred to the Committee on Resources
To amend the Mineral Leasing Act to increase the maximum acreage of
Federal leases for coal that may be held by an entity in any 1 State.
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the
United States of America in Congress assembled,
SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.
This Act may be cited as the ``Coal Market Competition Act of
SEC. 2. FINDINGS.
Congress finds that--
(1) Federal land contains commercial deposits of coal, the
Nation's largest deposits of coal being located on Federal land
in Utah, Colorado, Montana, and the Powder River Basin of
(2) coal is mined on Federal land through Federal coal
leases under the Act of February 25, 1920 (commonly known as
the ``Mineral Leasing Act'') (30 U.S.C. 181 et seq.);
(3) the sub-bituminous coal from these mines is low in
sulfur, making it the cleanest burning coal for energy
(4) the Mineral Leasing Act sets for each leasable mineral
a limitation on the amount of acreage of Federal leases any 1
producer may hold in any 1 State or nationally;
(5)(A) the present acreage limitation for Federal coal
leases has been in place since 1976;
(B) currently the coal lease acreage limit of 46,080 acres
per State is less than the per-State Federal lease acreage
limit for potash (96,000 acres) and oil and gas (246,080
(6) coal producers in Wyoming and Utah are operating mines
on Federal leaseholds that contain total acreage close to the
coal lease acreage ceiling;
(7) the same reasons that Congress cited in enacting
increases for State lease acreage caps applicable in the case
of other minerals--the advent of modern mine technology,
changes in industry economics, greater global competition, and
the need to conserve Federal resources--apply to coal;
(8) existing coal mines require additional lease acreage to
avoid premature closure, but those mines cannot relinquish
mined-out areas to lease new acreage because those areas are
subject to 10-year reclamation plans, and the reclaimed acreage
is counted against the State and national acreage limits;
(9) to enable them to make long-term business decisions
affecting the type and amount of additional infrastructure
investments, coal producers need certainty that sufficient
acreage of leasable coal will be available for mining in the
(10) to maintain the vitality of the domestic coal industry
and ensure the continued flow of valuable revenues to the
Federal and State governments and of energy to the American
public from coal production on Federal land, the Mineral
Leasing Act should be amended to increase the acreage
limitation for Federal coal leases.
SEC. 3. COAL MINING ON FEDERAL LAND.
Section 27(a) of the Act of February 25, 1920 (30 U.S.C. 184(a)),
(1) by striking ``(a)'' and all that follows through ``No
person'' and inserting ``(a) Coal Leases.--No person'';
(2) by striking ``forty-six thousand and eighty acres'' and
inserting ``75,000 acres''; and
(3) by striking ``one hundred thousand acres'' each place
it appears and inserting ``150,000 acres''.
Passed the Senate October 5 (legislative day, September
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