Jewell said in an announcement late last week that the administration would like to know “how the BLM can best carry out its responsibility to ensure that American taxpayers receive a fair return on the coal resources managed by the federal government on their behalf.” She also noted that the sessions are being held to progress conversations on reforms to the program, including a potential increase in coal royalty rates.

The first session has been scheduled for July 29 at the South Interior Building Auditorium in Washington, D.C., on July 29, followed by an August 11 gathering at the Hampton Inn, Lewis and Clark Conference Center in Billings, Montana.

On August 13, interested individuals can listen and provide input at the Campbell County Library in Gillette, Wyoming; another meeting will be held at the Marriott Denver West in Golden, Colorado, on August 18.

Finally, on August 20, a listening session will take place at the Courtyard Marriott in Farmington, New Mexico.

All of the meetings will commence at 1 p.m. local time and adjourn at about 4 p.m.

Those unable to attend a live session have the option for remote participation/livestreaming here (Washington and Denver meetings only).

The BLM currently manages 310 active coal leases covering about 475,000 acres in 10 states. About 40% of coal produced in the U.S. comes from federal coal resources.