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Archive for the ‘Appalachian communities’ Category

Dreaming of a Flat Earth

Posted by feww on December 5, 2008

Blast off my mountaintops, bury my streams!

More black coal for less green earth!

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, EPA, has encouraged more mountaintop-removal mining by removing the last legal hurdle, a 25-year-old law that prohibited surface coal mining activities within 100 feet of flowing streams.

mountaintop removal fly-over-19
Once green mountains teeming with wildlife, Appalachian mountaintops are ruthlessly blasted off for coal.  Photo courtesy:  Stop Mountaintop Removal. See source for copyright information.

The U.S. surface coal mining is done by blasting off mountaintops and dumping the debris in the adjoining valleys in Appalachia, across Kentucky, Tennessee, West Virginia and Virginia.

About 10 percent of U.S. coal production, nearly 127  million tons of coal, came from U.S. mountaintop mining in 2007, according to the National Mining Association.

“The EPA’s decision is a slap in the face of Appalachian communities, which have already endured enough injustice from mountaintop removal … My home and thousands of others are now in greater jeopardy.” Said Vernon Haltom of Coal River Mountain Watch.

Mining debris from about 411 mountaintops that were blasted off have buried about 1,200 miles of mountain streams have been buried under mining debris.

Alpha Natural Resources, International Coal Group, Massey Energy Co., and Patriot Coal Corp are among Appalachian surface mine owners.

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Posted in Appalachian communities, coal industry, marsification, Office of Surface Mining, Wildlife | Tagged: , , , , | 1 Comment »