Coal, Oil and Gas Stockholders don't need our pity.


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I’ve been involved in the industry, in the coal industry in West Virginia, on and off for 27 years. I was invited down about three or four years ago by the local group at Coal Mountain to help them in their battle to save this last mountain, as Bill says.

Massey Coal is the third largest coal company in the country, but it is by far the biggest practitioner of mountaintop removal mining. Over the past decade, they have leveled an area of the Appalachians the size of Delaware, 1.4 million acres. They’ve cut down 500 of the biggest mountains in the state. And they’ve buried, as Bill said, thousands of miles of rivers and streams.

They have to break the law to do this. They cannot survive in the marketplace without violating the law. They violate labor laws. They violate health and safety laws. And by their own records, they’ve had some 67,000 violations of just one of the environmental statutes. But they’re in violation of many, many other environmental statutes. Last year, I debated Don Blankenship in West Virginia in front of a statewide audience, a televised debate. And I asked him during the debate, "Is it possible for you to do your job without breaking the law?" And he said, "No, it is not." So this is a criminal enterprise, even by his own estimation.

Excerpt from an Interview with ROBERT F. KENNEDY, JR. MAY 24, 2011

Taken from Interview with Author Mark Hertsgaard on FRIDAY, APRIL 15, 2011 .

Terms to look for:
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