Almost Level, West Virginia: Come See For Yourself!

Published by danawv, October 5th, 2007

Have you heard about this Mountain Top Removal Crap? It sucks. It kills people, it killed the West Virginia economy, it’s killing one of the largest sources of fresh water on the planet, it’s speeding up climate chaos. Come see for yourself at the annual Anti-MTR Student Summit this Oct. 20-21. You don’t have to be a student to go. One hour south of Charleston, WV, the lovely Coal River Valley is home to wild bears, ginseng hunters, and strip mining. Visit Larry Gibson’s homeplace on Kayford Mountain and see MTR (Mountain Top Removal) first hand. Hear the stories of affected community members. Eat piles of vegan food. Learn about the 2.8 Billion gallon coal sludge dam that poised to burst over an elementary school. Get so mad you want to spit. And then, we’ll tell you some places to spit at that might make a difference. And then on Monday we can carpool to No War No Warming.

Speaking of Marsh Fork Elementary, here in the Mountain State we’re mad as hell because a judge recently decided that’s ok to flout the law (Federal Surface Mine Reclamation Act) that says you can’t have coal mining or processing plants within 300 feet of a school. Call us crazy, but is that too much to ask? I mean, you can’t even smoke a cigarette within that space of a school. Nonetheless, the silo will be 260 feet away from Marsh Fork Elementary which already boasts a coal processing plant (that emits so much dust the kids’ feet turn black during recess) and the aforementioned 2.8 billion gallon sludge dam. We’ve been fighting this silo for 2 years now, and because of the controversy, Massey CEO Don Blankenship, has offered to consult with our governor before they build the silo. I thought maybe concerned citizens should have that same right. If you breathe air, drink water, or use electricity, you have every bit as much say in this matter as Don Blankenship. If you would like to consult with Governor “Baloney” Joe Manchin before Massey’s subsidiary Goals Coal builds a toxin spewing silo next to an elementary school, please note his contact info. Or write a letter to the editor about it.

The good news is, West Virginia youth are getting together to do something about it. This past weekend they hosted the West Virginia Energy Gathering to build a network of students in WV fighting environmental injustices.