A publication of Appalachian Voices


A publication of Appalachian Voices

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



Congress Needs to Pass the RECLAIM Act

Politicians like to talk about helping rural Appalachia. The RECLAIM Act is a chance for them to show that they mean it.


Environmental Votetracker — June/July 2019 issue

See how Appalachian legislators voted on several environmental topics in April and May 2019.


Congressional Hearing Addresses Abandoned Mine Cleanup

Regional leaders testified in front of a U.S. House subcommittee about strategies to restore abandoned mines and witnesses expressed support for the RECLAIM Act.


Most Sweeping Public Lands Bill in Decades Becomes Law

New public lands legislation designates 1.3 million acres of new wilderness, reauthorizes the Land and Water Conservation Fund, and more.


Duke and Dominion Energy's Contributions to NC Legislature

The two monopoly utilities contributed hundreds of thousands of dollars to North Carolina legislative campaigns in 2018.


States Tackle Environmental and Energy Issues

With state legislative sessions underway across Appalachia, here are some energy and environmental bills to keep an eye on.


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.