Coal mining, in particular, strip mining has become the latest casualty of the growing green movement in the United States. What is strip mining? Encyclopædia Britannica Online defines strip mining as the removal of vegetation, soil, and rock above a layer of coal, followed by the removal of the coal itself (“strip”). Most Americans don’t realize the impact this material of biological origin that can be used as a source of energy (“fossil”), or fossil fuel, has on their everyday lives or the nation’s economy. According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, the mining industry directly employs some fifty thousand Americans with nearly half that number working in the more specific field of strip mining, or mountain top removal …show more content…
Deforestation’s accompaniment is erosion. Since much of strip mined land lacks proper restoration, weather causes further loss of soil and vital nutrients needed for native vegetation to grow. “Mountain Top Mining and Valley Fills Report” published by the EPA cites KA Harper and others educated and conducting studies in the fields of biology, environmental studies, and renewable sources. According to Harper, the change in mineral content of land affected by surface mining prohibits growth of indigenous plant life and allows foreign plant life to invade, changing the areas ecosystem (Harper). Water contamination is the next major concern of environmental groups. The Environmental Protection Agency, the governmental regulatory agency created in 1970 to manage the enforcement of environmental policy, states its concerns in a letter to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in 2009 (United). Specifically addressing mines in West Virginia and Kentucky, the EPA expressed serious concerns over water pollution from strip mining (“EPA”). The rupture of an ash dike at the Tennessee Valley Authority’s Kingston Fossil Plant in Roane County, TN on December 22, 2008 granted credibility to the EPA’s concerns. In an article published by in Environmental Health Perspectives, Rhitu Chatterjee comments on the poisonous substances contained in ash produced from processing coal, listing
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When asked to think of coal mining, what comes to mind? A mountain with a hole cut into the side of it with a set of railroad tracks disappearing into it? Maybe an old mine car or two full of some rocks or coal, with a pickaxe and shovel leaning against it. A few guys with hard hats covered in a black powder coming walking out of the mine pushing a car or two full of coal. The technology has advanced but the process is basically still the same as well as the outcome. Coal is retrieved from underground and taken to factories to be burnt to create electricity or to fuel the steel mills.
Appalachia, a vast, beautiful panoply of lush green mountains. At least, most of the thin line of peaks that make up the Appalachian Mountains used to be that way. Currently, the continued spread of a method of coal extraction known as mountaintop removal mining has plagued areas of the eastern United States, mainly including the state of West Virginia. Throughout its increasing stages of implementation, mountaintop removal mining has caused numerous hampering effects, including causing serious harm to nearby residents, and polluting a once-pure environment. Because of this, mountaintop removal mining needs to be limited in order to preserve the natural state of the Appalachian Mountains.
In Jan. 2011, the EPA decided to veto the dumping of waste from the Spruce No. 1 Mine. But the agency’s efforts have so far been rebuffed by the courts as an overreach: Under the weird legal regime that governs mining, it’s the Army Corps of Engineers, not the EPA, which has the ultimate say-so over those permits. In 2012, the D.C. district court ruled that EPA lacked authority to veto the permit after the Corps had issued it. However, in fact EPA's decision is based on evidence from scientific research on serious environmental harm from mining. In May 2013, a coalition of Appalachian and environmental groups petitioned the EPA to set a numeric water quality standard under the Clean Water Act to protect streams from pollution caused by mountaintop removal mining . They claimed that “State politics and industry pressure have so far failed to end this pollution without such a standard and more and more streams and communities who rely on those waters are left vulnerable. We need EPA to act now.” The EPA’s authority over the Clean Water Act in respect to Spruce Mine No. 1 was finally affirmed by the Supreme Court in March 2014.
I would have to say that from the reading that it can be very harmful for the coal mining chemicals to seep into the ground into our drinking water.
Many companies have made money from the coal industry; however, the money has not stayed within the state. Big businesses have exploited the resources creating rich executives and leaving the Appalachian area stripped of its bounty. Currently, big businesses are involved in mountain-top removal to remove resources from our mountains. This leaves many of the beautiful mountains destroyed, pollutes the water systems and kills the wildlife and vegetation. The coal industry which once supported many families in the Appalachian area is now becoming the downfall of our tourist
Recently, a contractor working for the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) unintentionally released 3 million gallons of toxic mine waste into the Animas River in the Mountain West state of Colorado. Right now, people in the US are debating the efficacy of the EPA (the right-wing is using the spill as anti-government propaganda) and the noxious aftermath the spill will undoubtedly have on local economies, communities and ecosystems.
Surface mining began to replace traditional underground mining around WWII (Bozzi 116). Rather than digging into the mountain to extract the coal, strip mining involves removing the overlying soil and rock that covers the coal deposits (Lutz 1). It seemed appealing at first because the previous known dangers of black-lung disease and cave-ins were now limited with the surface mining method (Bozzi 116). However, surface mining came with it’s own problems, a lot of them being more serious and irreversible than underground mining (Allen 182). This method of surface mining was the spark that created the trend of mountaintop removal (Bozzi 117). Mountaintop removal is the complete destruction of the mountain peak in order to reach coal
This paper will review past practices and policies relating to mountaintop coal mining, evaluate and analyze current research on the impact of coal mining on human health, and provide recommendations for further research guided by logic and in agreement with biblical truth.
Recently, a contractor working for the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) unintentionally released 3 million gallons of toxic mine waste into the Animas River in the Mountain West state of Colorado. Today, people in the US are debating the efficacy of the EPA (the right-wing is using the spill as anti-government propaganda) and the toxic aftermath the spill will undoubtedly have on local economies, communities and ecosystems. So far, the spill has "contaminated the Animas River, San Juan River, and the Colorado River in Utah."
Did you know what strip mining does to forests. Instead of having nice landscapes we have flat landes. It could be for artists or it can be for mountain climbing. We are also cutting down our fresh air suppliers. Later in the future we will have less fresh air so we will have to make
Coal is a hard, black colored rock-like substance. It is made up of carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen, and varying amount of sulphur. Coal was form as decomposition took place in the absence of oxygen and much of the hydrogen content of the matter was eroded away, leaving a material rich in carbon. The material was compressed over the years by sand and dirt, leaving the form of a carbon known as coal. The different types of coals are Anthracite, bituminous, lignite, peat, coke, and charcoal. Coal is mined out of the ground and used to produce energy. However, they are many deaths, injuries, and sickness involved in mining coal.
Coal, a mineral I have discussed previously, is necessary to our everyday lives. Coal is an incredible source of energy; it heats our houses and buildings, and also fuels stoves. You may often wonder where this extremely useful mineral comes from. Coal does not just appear; it needs to be mined through a process which results in our being able to utilize it. Coal mining is fairly inexpensive, is carried out on a large scale and can be mined in either underground or surface mines.
The rate of deforestation is increasing and the tropical forests are falling at approximately 140,000 acres per day (Miller & Tangley 1991: xvi). The forests are crucial to the environment. They are important in minimizing erosion, providing a stable habitat for many animals, and helping to keep the environment clean. Deforestation has devastating effects, not only on the biological dependents within the depleted forests, but also on the surrounding human-populated communities.
In our days, mining for resources is inevitable. The resources we need are valuable in everyday life. Such resources mined up are coal, copper, gold, silver, and sand. However, mining poses environmental risks that can degrade the quality of soil and water, which can end up effecting us humans if not taken care of and many of the damages are irreversible once they have occurred.