Surface Mine Board Hearing Result

May 16, 2017

Thanks to everyone who came to show their support at the Surface Mine Board hearing May 9. Knowing that you were, and still are, with us is encouraging in spite of the bad news. The SMB dismissed our appeal of Alpha Natural Resources' 853-acre Long Ridge #1 mountaintop removal permit on Coal River Mountain. The grounds for dismissal were, well, strange. Amazingly, the WV Dept. of Environmental Protection (WVDEP) attorney agreed with the coal company attorney that WVDEP officials should not be relied upon for accurate information. The SMB ruled that CRMW is an "articulate and sophisticated" organization that should know better than to trust the WVDEP permit supervisor and instead know the details of the laws ourselves. We filed our appeal in the time frame that WVDEP told us. Unfortunately, that time frame did not comply with the law, the same law that the WVDEP routinely breaks. Stay tuned for more on this permit and others. We're not done fighting yet. In the meantime, please support our work if you can, and enjoy this photo of the Long Ridge area of Coal River Mountain.