Published: Sep 27, 2010 4:58 PM EDT
Updated: Sep 27, 2010 1:58 PM EDT

WASHINGTON (AP) - Environmentalists and other protesters are rallying in the nation's capital to urge the Obama administration to end mountaintop removal mining.

Hundreds gathered Monday at Freedom Plaza, a few blocks from the White House, targeting a coal removal process they say pollutes water and causes other environmental calamities. Coal companies, who staged their own rally two weeks ago, says it's the most efficient way to reach some reserves.

The Environmental Protection Agency has taken steps to rein in mountaintop removal mining, but the protesters want a total ban. Organizer Maria Gunnoe told the mostly youthful crowd, "You cannot regulate destruction."

The protesters planned a march and protest at the White House later in the day.