As we have succeeded in defeating many new mountaintop removal and valley fill permits, the coal industry has been hard at work trying to find a work-around. This time they are trying to disguise mountaintop removal as a “highway project” in southwestern Virginia.
The controversial Coalfields Expressway, a proposed four-lane, $2.4 billion road project across the coalfield counties of Virginia is awaiting approval by the Federal Highways Administration.
If approved, the project would actually give the coal companies taxpayer dollars, regulatory exemptions, and the power of eminent domain to blow up mountains and bury headwater streams along the route of the 4-lane highway. And what’s worse: the proper environmental assessment has not been done to analyze the inevitable impacts of this project.
The Federal Highways Administration has a responsibility to insure that all significant impacts of the road are studied, and all reasonable alternatives are considered. Federal Highways needs to hear from you that Mountaintop removal is a significant impact, and this “road” needs a closer look.
Please take a moment and let FHWA know that mountaintop removal and burying streams do count as significant impacts!