For decades, the coal industry has been using one of the most deadly and destructive forms of coal mining, mountaintop removal mining, at the expense of the health of Appalachian communities. We can’t stand by while this administration continues to put the interests of polluting, extractive industries over those of the people of Appalachia. We need Congress to act.
Mountaintop removal mining uses explosives to blow the tops off mountains to access the coal seams beneath. This launches harmful particulates of silica, aluminum, and molybdenum into the atmosphere, contaminating the air that local communities must breathe and the water they must drink.
Instead of working to address this issue, the Trump administration cancelled a vital study that was looking into the health impacts of mountaintop removal mining. They did this after top Department of Interior officials met with representatives of the coal and mining industries.
It’s time for Congress to intervene by passing the Appalachian Community Health Emergency Act (ACHE Act). This act would put an emergency moratorium on all mountaintop removal mining activities until a comprehensive federal study of the health risks associated with this destructive practice can be completed.