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



Companies play hot potato with unreclaimed Blackjewel mines

Tuesday, March 31st, 2020 | Posted by Willie Dodson | No Comments

Virginia regulators, a surety insurance company, and two coal companies are playing hot potato with 22 of bankrupt Blackjewel’s coal permits — and none of them want to be left with the responsibility of reclaiming the sites. [ More ]


Black lung service providers shift in the face of COVID-19

Tuesday, March 24th, 2020 | Posted by Willie Dodson | No Comments

As coal miners with black lung disease have a heightened risk of complications from coronavirus, black lung healthcare providers work to respond to the global pandemic. [ More ]


Virginia issues new enforcement actions for Justice family mine violations

Thursday, March 5th, 2020 | Posted by Willie Dodson | No Comments

Mining companies owned by West Virginia Governor Jim Justice and his family have chronically violated environmental standards and failed to pay fines and fees. Virginia regulators recently issued notices of mine permit revocation and bond forfeiture for two of the family's companies. [ More ]


Protected or not? Coal company pushes for mine in protected Tennessee area

Tuesday, November 5th, 2019 | Posted by Willie Dodson | No Comments

Federal regulators are considering a proposal for a new surface coal mine in Tennessee's Cumberland Mountains, despite the fact that in 2016, the federal government declared most of the area in question off-limits to surface mining. [ More ]


Bond forfeitures begin on bankrupt Blackjewel and Revelation mine permits

Thursday, September 5th, 2019 | Posted by Willie Dodson | No Comments

An unreclaimed coal mine has sent mud and debris onto a neighboring property. The mine is one of five Virginia permits owned by bankrupt Revelation Energy and Blackjewel that are now facing bond forfeiture, which means the state or the mines' insurance companies could take over the cleanup. [ More ]


Blackjewel’s black lung problem

Friday, August 30th, 2019 | Posted by Willie Dodson | No Comments

Bankrupt coal company Blackjewel owes nearly $10 million in taxes to the fund that provides benefits to miners with black lung disease whose employer has gone bankrupt. [ More ]


KY plans to spend Abandoned Mine Land Pilot funds on a federal prison

Wednesday, April 24th, 2019 | Posted by Willie Dodson | No Comments

The state of Kentucky intends to use Abandoned Mine Land Pilot funds to build water and sewer lines for a proposed federal prison, a project that does not support true economic renewal or justice. [ More ]


Good – and not-so-good – mine reclamation projects

Friday, March 8th, 2019 | Posted by Willie Dodson | No Comments

Congress has funded "pilot" projects to repurpose old coal sites in Appalachia for three years; the results show a clear need for a strong RECLAIM Act grounded in community-driven goals and environmental cleanup. [ More ]


Community resists proposed strip mine in Ohio State Forest

Monday, February 18th, 2019 | Posted by Willie Dodson | No Comments

The grassroots group Friends of Perry State Forest formed to fight a proposed 550-acre strip mine in Southeast Ohio's Perry State Forest. A key public meeting is set for Feb. 26. [ More ]


Underground mine blowout causes flood, property damage in Virginia

Tuesday, February 12th, 2019 | Posted by Willie Dodson | No Comments

Accumulated water bursting out of one of CM Mining, LLC’s operations in Hurley, VA, causes flooding and property damage in nearby neighborhood. [ More ]


Cuts to funding for black lung benefits

Friday, January 25th, 2019 | Posted by Willie Dodson | 1 Comment

Despite significant grassroots pressure, an excise tax that pays into a healthcare and disability fund for miners with black lung was slashed in half. The lack of action by Congress amounts to a tax break for coal companies while putting benefits for former miners and their families at risk. [ More ]


Southwest Virginia group challenges surface mine proposed near UVA-Wise

Wednesday, October 24th, 2018 | Posted by Willie Dodson | No Comments

The mining company’s executive is the former head of the corporation responsible for the 2004 mining accident that killed 3-year-old Jeremy Davidson. [ More ]