- Associated Press - Monday, December 15, 2014

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — Alpha Natural Resources has reached a settlement with environmental groups over stream pollution from two affiliated mountaintop removal mining complexes.

The proposal filed Monday in U.S. District Court in Huntington requires judicial approval.

The settlement addressing high conductivity discharges gives Alpha until August 2019 to meet water cleanup marks.

In June, a judge ruled Elk Run Coal and Alex Energy mines harmed aquatic life in a Boone County creek and Robinson Fork in Nicholas County.

The 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals denied Alpha’s appeal in October.

High conductivity might indicate pollutants including chloride, phosphate and nitrate. Mountaintop mines fill valleys with waste.

Bristol, Virginia-based Alpha said its settlement doesn’t endorse current research.

The Ohio Valley Environmental Coalition, West Virginia Highlands Conservancy and Sierra Club brought the case in 2012.

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