Mountaintop removal was again in the news this week after the EPA announced that it wants to overrule the Army Corps of Engineers and revoke the permit for one of Appalachia's largest MTR sites. Arch Coal Inc.'s Spruce No. 1 in West Virginia has been at the center of controversy, but the EPA will take away the mine's permit under the Clean Air Act, a victory for the increasingly strong movement against mountaintop removal.Shawn Garvin, the EPA's mid-Atlantic regional administrator, told EE News:
"Coal, and coal mining, is part of our nation's energy future, and for that reason EPA has made repeated efforts to foster dialogue and find a responsible path forward. But we must prevent the significant and irreversible damage that comes from mining pollution -- and the damage from this project would be irreversible."
"This recommendation is consistent with our broader Clean Water Act efforts in Central Appalachia. EPA has a duty under the law to protect water quality and safeguard the people who rely on these waters for drinking, fishing and swimming."
Rainforest Action Network's New Mountaintop Removal Pledge
RAN, which is bringing the country's attention to the "American Tragedy" of MTR, launched a new website this week asking people to take a pledge to stop mountaintop removal. Participants pledge to take some action to spread the word. They can tweet, blog email their friends, or take other online actions.
RAN describes it like this:
By joining the mountain pledge you are becoming part of the hundreds of thousands who are taking real actions to stop the tragic practice of mountaintop removal coal mining. Families across Appalachia are standing up to fight and they need our help. They need to know they're not alone.
You can sign up at www.mountainpledge.org
More on MTR:
EPA Reviews Permits for 79 Mountaintop Removal Coal Mining Operations
EPA Approves One New Mountaintop Removal Coal Mine, Finds 'Path Forward' for Second