A publication of Appalachian Voices


A publication of Appalachian Voices

A bimonthly digest of regional energy news



TVA Releases Long-term Energy Plan, Announces Retirement of Two Coal Power Plants

The Tennessee Valley Authority plans to add between four and nine gigawatts of solar power over the next 20 years, and voted to close two old coal-fired power plants in February.


Friends of Perry State Forest Fight Mine Permit

The proposed 545-acre strip mine in Ohio would encompass 12 percent of the state forest and would be managed by the former CEO of a coal company that covered up water quality violations.


Westmoreland Coal Allowed to Sever Worker Agreements

In February, a federal judge allowed Westmoreland Coal Company to terminate benefits for current and retired coal miners.


Kentucky Holds Hearing on 10,000-acre Mining Ban

Residents of Harlan County, Ky., are seeking to ban surface mining on 10,000 acres of land near the towns of Benham and Lynch.


Groups Urge Virginia Mining Agency to Strengthen Regulations

Environmental groups are calling on Virginia regulators to strengthen coal mining rules by making it easier for citizens who file complaints to be involved in site inspections, strengthening bonding requirements and more.


West Virginia Enacts Coal Tax Cut

Gov. Jim Justice signed bills dropping a tax on coal from 5 to 3 percent over the next three years and granting a 35 percent tax credit to coal companies buying new equipment for new or expanded mining operations.


Fracking Company to Pay Millions for WV Clean Water Act Violations

Fracking company Antero Resources was ordered to pay $3.15 million for state and federal water pollution violations and to undertake an estimated $8 million cleanup.


NC Governor Proposes Wind Energy Study

Gov. Roy Cooper's proposed budget for 2019 to 2021 includes $300,000 for a study to determine the state's feasibility for offshore wind energy.


Proposed Mine Causes Concern in Birmingham

A water utility and a local conservation group in Birmingham, Ala., are fighting against a proposed strip mine 5.5 miles upstream of the city's primary drinking water intakes.


Reinterpretation of Migratory Bird Law Favors Energy Companies

Eight states alongside environmental groups are suing the federal government for its 2017 ruling that allows the incidental killing of migratory birds.


U.S. Sees Growth in Clean Energy Jobs

A total of 110,000 net new clean energy jobs were added in the United States in 2018, a growth rate of 3.6 percent.


Kentuckians Petition State to Block Surface Mining Near Two Towns

Filers of the petition argue that future surface coal mining near Benham and Lynch, Ky., would harm residents' health and enjoyment of the area, as well as the towns' historic character and attempts to attract tourism.


Funding for Black Lung Benefits Halved

A tax on coal companies funding benefits for former miners with black lung disease was halved at the first of the year.


EPA Questions Benefits of Mercury Regulations

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is changing the way it calculates the benefits of reducing mercury and air pollution emissions from coal-fired power plants, which advocates fear could lead to looser pollution limits in the future.


Petrochemical Plants Advance

Ohio issued an air permit for a petrochemical plant in Belmont County as construction continues on Royal Dutch Shell's ethane cracker in western Pennsylvania.