A publication of Appalachian Voices


A publication of Appalachian Voices

Tracking political news and regional legislator voting records on environmental and energy issues.



Reauthorization of Mine Lands Program Advances

The U.S. House of Representatives passed a bill that would renew funding for restoring abandoned coal mine sites — but it would also limit a wide swath of environmental protections.


Environmental Votetracker — Aug/Sept 2018 issue

Chart showing how Appalachian legislators voted on recent environmental legislation.


Endangered Species Act Threatened

New guidelines from the Trump Administration alongside a congressional package of nine bills would bring massive changes to the Endangered Species Act.


House Version of Farm Bill Guts Environmental Protections

The U.S. House of Representative's version of the 2018 Omnibus Farm Bill would roll back protections for endangered species, water and public lands.


Environmental Votetracker — June/July 2018 issue

Chart showing how Appalachian legislators voted on recent environmental legislation.


Spending Bill Sustains Appalachian Programs

While the federal budget includes funding for programs like the Appalachian Regional Commission, the bill omitted the RECLAIM Act.


Environmental Votetracker — April/May 2018 issue

Chart displays how Appalachian House and Senate members voted regarding several environmental issues in February and March.


The Ongoing Cleanup of Abandoned Coal Mines

A key federal mine reclamation program is up for reauthorization in 2021 — and the work is far from finished.


Coal Insider Nominated to Lead Mining Agency

The White House nominated J. Steven Gardner, who has worked in the coal industry for over four decades, to lead the Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement.


Calls for Action on RECLAIM Act

Supporters of the RECLAIM Act traveled to Washington, D.C., in October to urge legislators to cosponsor the bill and hold a vote before the end of 2017.


Environmental Votetracker — Dec. 2017 / Jan. 2018 issue

How Appalachian House and Senate members voted regarding several environmental issues in October and November.


West Virginia Governor Shows Allegiance to Coal

West Virginia Governor Jim Justice is pushing for federal coal subsidies, but his companies have also amassed millions in fines due to worker safety and environmental violations.


Environmental Votetracker — Oct/Nov 2017 issue

How Appalachian House and Senate members voted regarding several environmental issues in August and September.


RECLAIM Act Passes House Committee

A bill to accelerate the reclamation of abandoned coal mines and revitalize local economies moved forward and could be voted on this fall.


Environmental Votetracker — Aug/Sept 2017 issue

How Appalachian House and Senate members voted regarding several environmental issues in June and July