Blog Archives

White House halts review of mountaintop removal health impacts

The White House abruptly halted an active review of research linking mountaintop removal to human health impacts in Central Appalachia. Photo by Dot Griffith.

The U.S. Department of the Interior ordered the National Academy of Sciences to halt its review of the links between mountaintop removal coal mining and human health impacts.

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House Committee approves the RECLAIM Act with bipartisan support

The view from the U.S. Forest Service’s Birch Knob Observation Tower shows reclaimed surface mine land. Photo by Bill Harris, billharrisphotography@comcast.net

On Tuesday morning, the House Natural Resources Committee passed the RECLAIM Act, a bipartisan bill aimed at revitalizing coal mining communities. The legislation would direct $1 billion over five years to restoring abandoned mine lands. Committee members also approved an

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Congress Passes Budget Deal

In a last minute deal, Congress passed a compromise budget in late April that will fund federal obligations through September 2017. The budget includes funding for miner’s health care benefits that were lost during bankruptcy hearings for the parent companies.

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Environmental Votetracker — June/July 2017 issue

chart showing how Appalachian representatives voted

How Appalachian House and Senate members voted regarding several environmental issues in April and May.

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D.C. sends a ray of hope to Southwest Virginia

Citizens meet to discuss options and opportunities for the Norton Riverwalk proposal in Southwest Virginia.

Through the dark clouds of the Trump administration’s agenda for rolling back or killing off programs critical to the health of Appalachian communities and the environment, a bright spot has emerged — $10 million for repurposing old coal mines in Southwest Virginia for new economic opportunities.

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Congress includes $10 million for Southwest Virginia coal communities in spending plan

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Contact: Adam Wells, New Economy Program Manager, 276-679-1691, adam@appvoices.org Thom Kay, Senior Legislative Representative, 864-580-1843, thom.kay@appvoices.org Gerald Collins Coal Mining Engineering Services LLC, 276-220-0150, gerald1951@comcast.net Norton, Va. — A proposed federal spending bill that took shape in Congress over the

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White House budget leaves Appalachia in the dust

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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.

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Protect natural resources for Southwest Virginia’s future

Ron Short

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.”

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Fighting for clean water after the Stream Protection Rule

A valley fill beneath a mountaintop removal mine in eastern Kentucky. The Stream Protection Rule would have limited the practice.

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.

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Defending our vision for Appalachia

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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.

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