Archive for March 17th, 2010

Wednesday, March 17th, 2010 | Author:

Can mountaintop removal be stopped? That was the first question I had on my mind as I sat listening to the speakers last week discussing the issue of mountaintop removal. It is a very scary thought to know that there is such single-minded destruction happening so close to our own back yards. The Appalachian mountains are the closest effected from MTR. These mountains are considered ecological “hot spots” due to their vast store of plants and animals in both the precious hardwood forests and the streams of the Appalachian mountains. Mountaintop removal mining is systematically destroying the environment in which these plants and animals thrive by completely uprooting the top of the mountain and dumping the resulting debris into valley’s and streams. The fact that MTR is so environmentally damaging is not even the worst part of the MTR impact. For the people who live close to the mining sites, the drinking water has been contaminated, they are exposed to deadly airborne toxins, there is the constant threat of deadly flooding or a sludge leak, and the MTR method of mining has left many jobless and poor in an already struggling economy.

So, the big question; can mountaintop removal be stopped? I believe it can but there would, of course be very hard work ahead. The most pressing reason why MTR is so prevalent is because of our very unhealthy dependence on coal. If we could cut our dependence by limiting our use of energy and also finding alternative, renewable energy, to work with then we would not even need coal mining. But that goal is quite far off in the future. At the moment, we need to work with getting our congressmen to support bills and legislature to stop or hinder MTR itself. It is really quite upsetting that people of influence know of what MTR is and the destruction that it trails in its wake, but they will still do nothing about it.  

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