Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Mountaintop Removal and Coal Company "Reclamation"

One of the great and underreported environmental travesties of our time is the destruction of hundreds of mountains in Appalachia by mountaintop removal, a form of strip mining that leaves devastating environmental consequences for local communities. But if one listens to the coal industry, one of the recurring arguments for mountaintop removal is that the destroyed and leveled mountaintops are "reclaimed," that is, used for economic and agricultural purposes afterwards. According to a new study by Appalachian Voices and the National Resources Defense Council, over 89% of destroyed mountaintops are not used for any economic purposes whatsoever, despite claims to the contrary.

Using their handy map below, one can view the nearly 500 mountains in Appalachia forever destroyed by mountaintop removal, as well as the scant few that have been used for economic or agricultural rebuilding. One more lie perpetuated by the anti-mountain coal industry has been debunked. Isn't it time we stop the horrific practice of mountaintop removal?


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