Coal (1 - 10 of 88 items)
Army Corps of Engineers: Factors Contributing to Cost Increases and Schedule Delays in the Olmsted Locks and Dam Project
GAO-17-147: Published: Feb 16, 2017. Publicly Released: Feb 16, 2017.
Reports by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) and consultants it hired identified the construction method, contract type, and other factors as primary contributors to cost increases and schedule delays in the Olmsted Locks and Dam project. Specifically, the 2012 Corps' post-authorization change report (PACR) and a 2012 consultant report identified the Corps' 1997 selection of an innovative i...
Financial Assurances for Reclamation: Federal Regulations and Policies for Selected Mining and Energy Development Activities
GAO-17-207R: Published: Dec 16, 2016. Publicly Released: Jan 17, 2017.
Federal requirements for financial assurances, such as cash or bonds that companies may be required to provide to cover the cost of reclaiming lands affected by development, are broadly similar for surface coal mining, hardrock mining, onshore oil and gas extraction, and wind and solar energy development, but some differences exist. Federal laws, regulations, and policies govern various aspects of...
EPA Regulations and Electricity: Update on Agencies' Monitoring Efforts and Coal-Fueled Generating Unit Retirements
GAO-14-672: Published: Aug 15, 2014. Publicly Released: Sep 15, 2014.
The Department of Energy (DOE), the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) have taken initial steps to implement a recommendation GAO made in 2012 that these agencies develop and document a joint process to monitor industry's progress in responding to four proposed or finalized EPA regulations affecting coal-fueled generating units. GAO concluded...
Coal Leasing: BLM Could Enhance Appraisal Process, More Explicitly Consider Coal Exports, and Provide More Public Information
GAO-14-140: Published: Dec 18, 2013. Publicly Released: Feb 4, 2014.
Since January 1990, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) has leased 107 coal tracts, and associated coal production and revenues have grown. Most lease sales have had a single bidder and were leased the first time offered. The amount of coal produced from federal leases and associated revenues have increased since 1990, although production has leveled off since 2002. Revenues from federal coal leas...
Mineral Resources: Mineral Volume, Value, and Revenue
GAO-13-45R: Published: Nov 15, 2012. Publicly Released: Dec 12, 2012.
In summary, there were nearly 70 different types of leasable minerals extracted from federal lands and waters in fiscal years 2010 and 2011, but their volume cannot be aggregated because they use different units of measure. For example, the volumes of the four most valuable of these minerals--oil, gas, natural gas liquids, and coal--are measured in barrels, million cubic feet (mcf), gallons, and t...
Electricity: Significant Changes Are Expected in Coal-Fueled Generation, but Coal is Likely to Remain a Key Fuel Source
GAO-13-72: Published: Oct 29, 2012. Publicly Released: Nov 28, 2012.
Retirements of older units, retrofits of existing units with pollution controls, and the construction of some new coal-fueled units are expected to significantly change the coal-fueled electricity generating fleet, making it capable of emitting lower levels of pollutants than the current fleet but reducing its future electricity generating capacity. Two broad trends are affecting power companies'...
EPA Regulations and Electricity: Better Monitoring by Agencies Could Strengthen Efforts to Address Potential Challenges
GAO-12-635: Published: Jul 17, 2012. Publicly Released: Aug 16, 2012.
It is uncertain how power companies may respond to four key Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulations, but available information suggests companies may retrofit most coal-fueled generating units with controls to reduce pollution, and that 2 to 12 percent of coal-fueled capacity may be retired. Some regions may see more significant levels of retirements. For example, one study examined 11 s...
Federal Land Management: Availability and Potential Reliability of Selected Data Elements at Five Agencies
GAO-12-691T: Published: May 3, 2012. Publicly Released: May 3, 2012.
The five agencies varied in the extent to which they collected the over 100 land and resources, revenue, and federal land use designation data elements that GAO asked them about. Specifically, all five agencies collected data on four basic data elements, which related to total surface acres managed, total acres managed within each state, the number of special use permits generated for filming acti...
Abandoned Mines: Information on the Number of Hardrock Mines, Cost of Cleanup, and Value of Financial Assurances
GAO-11-834T: Published: Jul 14, 2011. Publicly Released: Jul 14, 2011.
The General Mining Act of 1872 helped foster the development of the West by giving individuals exclusive rights to mine gold, silver, copper, and other hardrock minerals on federal land. However, miners often abandoned mines, leaving behind structures, safety hazards, and contaminated land and water. Four federal agencies--the Department of the Interior's Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and Office...
Air Quality: Information on Tall Smokestacks and Their Contribution to Interstate Transport of Air Pollution
GAO-11-473: Published: May 11, 2011. Publicly Released: Jun 10, 2011.
Tall smokestacks--stacks of 500 feet or higher, which are primarily used at coal power plants--release air pollutants such as sulfur dioxide (SO2) and nitrogen oxides (NOx) high into the atmosphere to help limit the impact of these emissions on local air quality. Tall stacks can also increase the distance these pollutants travel in the atmosphere and harm air quality and the environment in downwin...