Blog Archives

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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Citizens discuss environmental threats and economic priorities during Congressman’s visit

Stanley Sturgill, of Kentuckians for the Commonwealth and Rep. Grijalva view the Looney Ridge Mine.

People from coal-impacted communities across Central Appalachia recently gathered in Wise County, Va., to share their concerns and ideas with U.S. Representative Raúl Grijalva.

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All the ways this White House props up coal

President Donald Trump shakes hands with EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt after announcing the United States will leave the Paris Climate Accord.

The coal lobby’s influence over the White House is a given at this point — as is the White House’s willingness to put its finger on the scale in favor of our dirtiest, most carbon-packed energy sources.

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Governor McAuliffe announces cap on carbon pollution in Virginia

Gov. McAuliffe signs Executive Directive 11 with clean energy advocates. Photo by Mary Rafferty.

In the face of a federal administration bent on rolling back key environmental protections and ignoring climate science, Governor McAuliffe took bold action Tuesday to limit greenhouse gas pollution in Virginia.

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Environmental regulations didn’t cause coal’s decline — and rollbacks won’t save it.

Now that he's in office, President Trump's promises to coal are colliding with the reality of the market forces shaping the industry's future. Photo via Flickr, licensed under Creative Commons.

Despite his repeated promises to do so, President Trump is unlikely to revive the coal industry through federal policy, and CEOs of electric utilities and coal mining companies know it.

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Budget Blowback

Front page news

The “America First” budget proposed by President Donald Trump in March 2017 would slash funding to many programs that Appalachian residents depend on.

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Reversing Climate Change Policies

President Trump signed an executive order reversing much of the progress President Obama made towards addressing the realities of climate change. The order calls for the Environmental Protection Agency to overturn the Clean Power Plan, but it will do little to revive the struggling coal industry.

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White House budget leaves Appalachia in the dust

White_House,_Blue_Sky

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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