Thank God for our Kentucky newspapers

Tuesday, October 6th, 2015 | Posted by Tarence Ray | No Comments

Local newspapers in Kentucky have helped expose state regulators' lax treatment of industry, most recently in the form of a secretive deal stuck with an oil company responsible for polluting drinking water supplies. But sadly, Kentucky's politicians and agencies aren't shy in revealing whose interests they truly serve either. [ More ]

Citizen stories counter coal industry deception

Tuesday, September 22nd, 2015 | Posted by Willie Dodson | No Comments

Citizens and clean water advocates used a series of hearings on the proposed Stream Protection Rule to demand improvements to the draft version and call out state agencies for repeatedly failing to enforce regulations already on the books. Coal industry representatives, on the other hand, relied on "war on coal" rhetoric and deception to rally against the rule. [ More ]

DENR is a “BOOR”

Tuesday, September 15th, 2015 | Posted by Amy Adams | No Comments

The N.C. Department of Environment and Natural Resources is acting like--to use its own term--a "bureaucratic object of resistance." The agency's creative interpretation of its mission statement is just one reflection of the McCrory administration’s broader hostility to the notion that public servants have a responsibility to protect the natural resources and therefore the public health and welfare of the Tar Heel state. [ More ]

Predictable politics giving way to popular support for POWER+

Tuesday, August 18th, 2015 | Posted by Brian Sewell | No Comments

In Kentucky, Virginia and Tennessee, cities and counties with long histories of coal mining are advocating for the POWER+ Plan, a federal budget initiative proposed by the White House to build a more diverse economy in the communities hardest hit by the regional coal industry’s decline. They deserve to be heard. [ More ]

A moment of truth for Kentucky’s coal regulators

Thursday, July 30th, 2015 | Posted by Tarence Ray | No Comments

A striking case of corruption related to mine inspections in Kentucky led to the recent criminal conviction of former Democratic state representative Keith Hall. But questions remain about how deep the conspiracy goes. Will Governor Steve Beshear and the state agencies that enforce mining laws in Kentucky adequately investigate? [ More ]

Supreme Court delivers blow to EPA’s mercury rule

Monday, June 29th, 2015 | Posted by Brian Sewell | No Comments

In a major decision today, the Supreme Court ruled the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency did not properly consider costs when it created a rule to limit mercury emissions from power plants. But the agency has a mandate and a clear path forward to protect public health by limiting emissions of mercury and other toxic air pollutants. [ More ]

Appalachian legislators give POWER+ the cold shoulder

Friday, June 26th, 2015 | Posted by Adam Wells | 1 Comment

economyVirginia’s coal-bearing counties would directly benefit from the adoption of the POWER+ plan, a proposal in the Obama administration’s 2016 budget that would direct more than a billion dollars to Central Appalachia. But budget bills passed out of both houses of Congress weaken or include no mention of the POWER+ Plan. [ More ]

Appalachian Regional Commission receives citizen input

Thursday, June 18th, 2015 | Posted by AV's Intern Team | 1 Comment

Subregions_2009_MapOn June 4, the Appalachian Regional Commission held one of its five 2016-2020 Strategic Plan Listening Sessions in Morehead, Ky. The session successfully facilitated the sharing of ideas by Appalachian stakeholders that will inform the commission’s plan for improving economic opportunities in communities across the region. [ More ]

One month, two hearings on mountaintop removal

Thursday, June 4th, 2015 | Posted by Thom Kay | 1 Comment

dustin testimonyIt’s rare that Appalachians have their voices heard in Congress. But twice in the past month, residents have had the opportunity to testify about mountaintop removal mining at two different U.S. House hearings. The lesson we learned? Congress does not want to help end mountaintop removal and they’d prefer not to hear about it. [ More ]

Reflections from the second SOAR Summit

Friday, May 22nd, 2015 | Posted by Adam Wells | No Comments

20150510_182914Last week's SOAR Summit provided a positive forum for people working to strengthen local economies in Appalachia. But, even with so many who care deeply about the region gathering in one place, there was disappointingly little time or space created for discussion amongst the people who are doing the lion's share of the groundwork in Appalachian communities. [ More ]

A “crass abuse of power” in the N.C. Senate

Thursday, May 21st, 2015 | Posted by Brian Sewell | 1 Comment

ec684640aee99db0e58e2bd4ab6d6f17 The disgust with North Carolina Sen. Bob Rucho today is broad and bipartisan. Yesterday in the Senate finance committee, which he chairs, Rucho not only limited debate on provisions of HB332, which would freeze the state's highly successful Renewable Portfolio Standard, he refused to allow an individual tally of votes and declared a failed bill passed. [ More ]

A first for North Carolina, now open for fracking

Monday, March 23rd, 2015 | Posted by Sarah Kellogg | No Comments

Fracking rigMarch 17 marked the first day in history that North Carolina has been fully open to the oil and gas industry for the dangerous, environmentally destructive practice of hydraulic fracturing for natural gas. Though the moratorium on fracking has been lifted, communities and environmental organizations across the state are prepared to continue fighting. [ More ]



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