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E-M:/ loving mountains, hating coal, and poverty



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Enviro-Mich message from "Anna Dorothy Graham" <grahama9@msu.edu>
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Yes, there's still a good deal of poverty and ignorance in the rural Appalachian areas, and they've been sold a line about jobs. The local economy had been heavily dependant on coal mining, when jobs in the mines used to be the only well-paying jobs in the area. But of course, mountain top removal eliminates a lot of jobs for less-well-educated folks (even if they're nasty, dirty and dangerous jobs), and the jobs that replace the mining jobs are 1) for better-educated sorts, 2) seasonal, or 3) better suited for college students than people who need to support families.

My memory of the incident involving the baby being killed was that the family was not a poor, uneducated rural family, but a relatively well-educated back-to-nature sort -- not that that matters, of course ...
Anna


Larry Nooden writes:

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Enviro-Mich message from Larry Nooden <ldnum@umich.edu>
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The stream beds in these mountain-topped areas are also filled with toxic minerals running off from the spoils. You can actually see this in the color of the water. Those minerals must get into local drinking water and produce some health effects.

The people in these areas seem poorly educated and desperate for jobs even if they are only sort-term jobs. They seem not to understand the health implications or the curtailment of future economic activities once the coal is gone.

Hopefully, Michigan will not contribute this and other derivative problems.

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Anna Kirkwood Graham, J.D., Ph.D.
"There is no trifling with nature; it is always true, grave and severe; it is always in the right, and the faults and errors fall to our share."
-- Goethe




==============================================================
ENVIRO-MICH:  Internet List and Forum for Michigan Environmental
and Conservation Issues and Michigan-based Citizen Action.   Archives at
http://www.great-lakes.net/lists/enviro-mich/

Postings to:  enviro-mich@great-lakes.net      For info, send email to
majordomo@great-lakes.net  with a one-line message body of  "info enviro-mich"
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