1,200 Excess Deaths Every Year


May 23, 2018

A year ago, on May 23, 2017, the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (NASEM) held a public hearing in Logan, WV, to inform their study “Potential Human Health Effects of Surface Coal Mining Operations in Central Appalachia.” In the year since, 1,200 people have died from diseases associated with mountaintop removal coal mining. At that hearing, I (Vernon Haltom of Coal River Mountain Watch) was one of the people representing groups opposed to mountaintop removal invited to present to the NASEM committee. My PowerPoint presentation included photos of Judy Bonds, Larry Gibson, Joanne Webb, and Carol Judy, beloved friends and family who had died of diseases associated with mountaintop removal. The presentation included quotes from Jodi J. of WV and Vickie T. of TN, both fighting cancer and both from communities near mountaintop removal. Both have since died.   In the evening session, the NASEM committee heard from our staff, volunteers, and members (including two retired miners), other groups, and other citizens who were opposed to mountaintop removal. They also heard from coal supporters and politicians, learning that coal can’t be bad for you, because it’s natural from the ground, and that both coal and smoking are harmless because a politician’s mining, smoking grandfather lived into his 90s.   At another hearing in Washington, DC, the committee heard from Michael Hendryx, PhD, and was exposed to the vast body of existing science demonstrating mountaintop removal’s deadly impacts. That in itself should have been enough to conclude that mountaintop removal needs to end now. Here’s a 14-minute TEDMed Talk of Dr. Hendryx concisely and powerfully summarizing the most damning impacts of mountaintop removal: http://www.crmw.net/updates/must-watch-dr-hendryx-on-why-mountaintop-removal-must-end.php. This is probably the clearest and most powerful 14 minutes of why we work to end mountaintop removal. Among Dr. Hendryx’s quotes are “1,200 excess deaths every year, in MTR areas, controlling for other risks” and “Eventually, scientific truth does and will win out. How many lives will be lost while we wait? Too many already.”

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Must Watch! Dr. Hendryx on Why Mountaintop Removal Must End.


May 22, 2018

This is probably the most powerful and incisive 14 minutes of why we work to end mountaintop removal. This is Dr. Michael Hendryx, the lead researcher on health impacts of mountaintop removal, on TED Talks:  “1,200 excess deaths every year, in MTR areas, controlling for other risks… Eventually, scientific truth does and will win out. How many lives will be lost while we wait? Too many already.” Watch at https://www.tedmed.com/talks/show?id=689121           Please watch, listen, and act. Lives depend on it. What can you do? For starters…

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Coal River Hemp Update


May 22, 2018

Our Coal River Hemp volunteer Vinnie Samolis has been busy planting, and a lot of little sprouts are popping up. He says: "Planting time! Have about 1/3 of the plot seeded. Beautiful weather for it and looking forward to the hemp workshop this Thursday in Winfield. A lot of great info and growers will be there. Hope to see you there." Coal River Mountain Watch, Judy Bonds Center for Appalachian Preservation, Naoma, Raleigh County, West Virginia, hempCoal River Mountain Watch, Judy Bonds Center for Appalachian Preservation, Naoma, Raleigh County, West Virginia, hemp  See more photos below.

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WV PSC: Suspend And Deny Double-Digit Electric Rate Hikes


May 11, 2018

To Ingrid Ferrell, WV Public Service Commission Executive Secretary: Suspend and Deny Appalachian Power Company and Wheeling Power Company’s application to raise residential and commercial electric rates by more than 11% (case number 18-0646-E-42T). Residents and businesses should not be penalized for energy conservation and West Virginia’s depopulation.

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Save Coal River Mountain


May 10, 2018

From Coal River Mountain Watch outreach coordinator Junior Walk:  Want to help us protect one of the most biologically diverse forests on the entire planet from being blasted and mined into a barren moonscape? Now is the time to act!

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Tadpole Project Cemetery Cleanup


May 10, 2018

Please support the Tadpole Project's work including maintaining local cemeteries for community pride and cultural preservation at https://secure.givelively.org/donate/coal-river-mountain-watch/tadpole-project or at CRMW, P.O. Box 303, Naoma, WV 25140. Adkins Cemetery in Naoma looks good after the first cutting. On Tuesday the 15th and Wednesday the 16th we are hoping to work on the Dickens/Webb Cemetery in PeachTree. We sure could use your help! The Tadpole Project will provide drinks and lunch.

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Reunited and It Feels So...Nasty: Alpha & Contura Merge


Apr 30, 2018

When coal giant Alpha Natural Resources underwent bankruptcy procedures in 2015, it split into two companies: Alpha Natural Resources and Contura Energy. Alpha emerged from bankruptcy in 2016. Now, the two have announced their merger, keeping the Contura Energy name. Nuptial celebrants will feast on Coal River Mountain, carved up as a wedding cake. Coal River Mountain Watch made the following statement: Mountaintop removal coal mining, Coal River Mountain, Raleigh County, West Virginia Today's merger announcement by chronic polluter Alpha Natural Resources and Contura Energy means bad news for the people and environment of Appalachia so badly impacted by mountaintop removal coal extraction. As a larger entity with more resources and more power, Contura/Alpha will more confidently violate the laws and regulations meant to protect us. Regulatory agencies will continue to ignore violations, with even stronger pressure to look the other way when the coal company pollutes our water, air and land. Coal River Mountain Watch calls upon all people of conscience to help us oppose this Goliath coal company's deadly and destructive operations, which are even now demolishing over ten square miles of Coal River Mountain (http://crmw.net/updates/they-crossed-the-line.php).

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