The Front Porch Blog, with Updates from AppalachiaThe Front Porch Blog, with Updates from Appalachia

Two North Carolina counties make energy efficiency history

Saturday, March 25th, 2017 | Posted by Lauren Essick | No Comments

Two western North Carolina counties -- Yancey and Mitchell -- made energy efficiency history when they passed resolutions supporting development of an "on-bill financing" for their citizens by local utility French Broad Electric. [ More ]

Unnecessary and unwanted: Opposition to the Atlantic Coast Pipeline grows

Wednesday, March 22nd, 2017 | Posted by Lara Mack | No Comments

The public has taken every opportunity to tell FERC to reject the Atlantic Coast Pipeline. There’s still time to add your voice to the choir of people across the country urging FERC to reject the unnecessary and unwanted project. [ More ]

White House budget leaves Appalachia in the dust

Tuesday, March 21st, 2017 | Posted by Thom Kay | No Comments

The White House released its budget blueprint last week, and the proposal is nothing short of a disaster for Appalachia and rural communities across the country. Here's a look at a few agencies and programs the White House wants to completely eliminate if it had its way. [ More ]

Congress must act to protect coal miners’ benefits

Friday, March 10th, 2017 | Posted by Thom Kay | No Comments

In a matter of weeks, health care benefits for thousands of retired union coal miners will run out. In just a matter of years, the entire United Mine Workers pension plan, which covers nearly 90,000 former coal miners and their widows, may become insolvent. [ More ]

FERC’s pipeline review process is broken

Monday, February 20th, 2017 | Posted by Peter Anderson | No Comments

It’s no secret: oil and gas pipelines have captured the nation’s attention, not to mention the new administration’s. But new research is refuting the industry's pro-pipeline arguments and even a former chairman of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission is calling for greater scrutiny of proposed natural gas infrastructure projects. [ More ]

Appalachia is blessed with abundant water — we should protect it

Monday, February 20th, 2017 | Posted by | No Comments

"One of the resources we are most blessed with here in Appalachia is fresh drinking water of the highest quality," writes Mackay Pierce in defense of the Stream Protection Rule, which was recently thrown out by Congress and President Trump. "We should be taking every possible measure that we can to protect it." [ More ]

Senate confirms Scott Pruitt to lead EPA

Friday, February 17th, 2017 | Posted by Brian Sewell | No Comments

As expected, the Senate has confirmed former Oklahoma attorney general and walking conflict of interest Scott Pruitt to be the next administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. If President Trump still plans to cripple the EPA, as he repeatedly promised during his campaign, the man to lead that effort begins work on Monday. [ More ]

Protect natural resources for Southwest Virginia’s future

Wednesday, February 15th, 2017 | Posted by | No Comments

For all my life, the coal economy has ruled this region and its people," writes Ron Short of Danville, Va., in a letter supporting the Stream Protection Rule. "Now we are facing the demise of the coal industry, and we must save the valuable natural resources that we have left if we are ever to develop cultural tourism and eco-tourism as important parts of a new economy that works for everyone." [ More ]

Energy policy in Virginia: 2017 General Assembly update

Thursday, February 9th, 2017 | Posted by Peter Anderson | No Comments

It’s “crossover” time at the Virginia General Assembly. Here at Appalachian Voices, we are closely tracking bills that will impact Virginia’s energy future. Will the commonwealth continue the fossil fuel-friendly policies of the past, or will we start building a clean energy economy today? [ More ]

Fighting for clean water after the Stream Protection Rule

Tuesday, February 7th, 2017 | Posted by Erin Savage | No Comments

When Congress voted last week to overturn the Stream Protection Rule, people braced themselves for the coming impacts. But threats to public water from corporate and political interests are nothing new in Central Appalachia, nor is the problem unique to this area. In the face of these threats, communities fighting for clean water need our continued support. [ More ]

Serving residents by saving energy

Thursday, February 2nd, 2017 | Posted by Katie Kienbaum | No Comments

Students at Appalachian State University in Boone, N.C. spent a recent Saturday volunteering with Appalachian Voices and others to give two local homes an energy efficiency boost. The work was part of the school's 18th annual MLK Challenge. “They caught energy leaks I knew nothing about," said Faith Wright of Vilas, N.C., who was grateful for the volunteer energy of what she called the "student worker bees." [ More ]

Defending our vision for Appalachia

Friday, January 20th, 2017 | Posted by Tom Cormons | No Comments

In our view, the new administration’s approach to environmental protection and national energy policy is dangerously shortsighted. We will do everything we can to see that the laws protecting our natural heritage and the communities of Appalachia are enforced, and not be distracted from our vision for a healthy, sustainable future for our region and beyond. We know you’ll stand with us during this uncertain time. [ More ]