Historic Blair Mountain, the site of one of the largest labor uprisings in U.S. history, in 1921, is under assault by the coal industry.
Arch Coal is currently seeking a permit to use explosives and bulldozers to destroy Blair Mountain to mine coal. In the process, Arch would not only pollute water in the area, it would erase an important part of this country’s labor history.
The West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection is currently considering Arch Coal’s permit application — and it is accepting public comments until next week. We need to make sure the DEP knows that allowing Arch Coal to destroy Blair Mountain is unacceptable.
Earlier this year, hundreds of CREDO activists in West Virginia called on Governor Tomblin to permanently protect Blair Mountain by designating the historic site unsuitable for mining. But since Governor Tomblin failed to act, we need to build pressure on the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection to block Arch Coal’s misguided permit application.
Mountaintop removal mining, which Arch Coal wants to use on Blair Mountain, is the most destructive form of coal mining there is. If Arch is allowed to move forward, dangerous pollutants would be dumped into the headwaters of the Spruce Fork watershed, damaging stream ecosystems and putting fish and amphibian populations at risk.
Local residents have identified several other concerns with Arch Coal’s misguided proposal, including the risk of increased and more severe flash floods, which would be devastating for residents of Blair, West Virginia.
The planned mining location is also an excellent location for future tourism opportunities, due to its unique place in American history and its natural beauty.
In the Battle of Blair Mountain, in 1921, coal miners fought for human dignity, fair working conditions and the right to organize. That’s a big part of the reason why coal companies like Arch Coal are so intent on destroying the mountain. But the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection has the power to stop them.
Click the link below to submit a public comment to the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection now:
Thanks for fighting to save Blair Mountain.
Josh Nelson, Campaign Manager
CREDO Action from Working Assets