So says some dude who writes for a trendy East Coast magazine (Rolling Stone; you'll not find it on your local 7-Eleven newsstand there in Grundy).
This is kind of silly when you think about it:
You need to understand, people out east like to read shit like this, even though it is completely detached from reality.
What It Costs Us
By Jeff Goodell, writing in the Washington Post
Digging up hard-to-get coal will ... devastate Appalachia, where huge mountaintop-removal mines have already buried 700 miles of streams and 400,000 acres of forests. (Mountaintop-removal is a particularly destructive form of mining in which entire mountains are blasted apart to expose the coal seams inside; the rubble is typically dumped in nearby valleys.)
Instead of strengthening oversight of this type of mining, the Bush administration proposed last week to loosen regulations and allow it to expand. One recent study estimated that if this practice continues, within 40 years the region disemboweled by mining will be approximately the size of Rhode Island. (link)
400,000 acres of forest gone forever!
Natural mountain streams (you folks over in Swords Creek know them as the gullies that cause all the flood damage when a heavy rain falls but are otherwise bone-dry) are altered forever.
Special note to the author: Tell you what, pal, we'll reclaim our forests and streams a heck of a lot faster than you're repairing that hole in the ground in downtown Manhattan.
I encourage you folks out east to click on the images to enlarge them