Archive

You are viewing the "coal" Archives

Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron

Kentucky’s AG Cameron on West Virginia Coal Plant: Close It

By:
Posted on:

FRANKFORT, Ky. (OVR) — Environmental and consumer groups have pushed for the early closure of a 50-year-old coal-fired power plant in West Virginia that serves electricity customers in both West Virginia and Kentucky. They have an unlikely ally: Kentucky’s Republican attorney general, Daniel Cameron. In a filing last week with the Kentucky Public Service Commission,… Read More

The John Amos power station in West Virginia

West Virginia Coal Plants Need Upgrades. Three States Will Decide Their Fate.

By:
Posted on:

They’ve towered over the region’s communities for decades. They generated the electricity for homes around the Ohio Valley. They burned coal, a fossil fuel Appalachia has in abundance. But three West Virginia coal-fired power plants owned by Ohio-based American Electric Power may be on borrowed time. The Mitchell Plant in Moundsville, the Mountaineer Plant in… Read More

Cecil Roberts, President of United Mine Workers of America

Mine Workers’ Leader Wants To Save Last Coal Jobs As Biden Tackles Climate

By:
Posted on:

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (OVR) — United Mine Workers of America President Cecil Roberts said he’s been hearing the term “just transition” tossed around for more than 20 years as part of the long-running, nearly Sisyphean discussion about climate change, clean energy, and coal country. Simply put: he’s not a fan. “I ask anybody who has been… Read More

National Climate Advisor Gina McCarthy in an interview with the ReSource.

White House Climate Advisor Sees A Path To A Clean Energy Transition Through Coal Country

By:
Posted on:

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (OVR) — For decades now, rhetoric around action on climate change has been about things like saving the planet, or saving polar bears. Just think: How many times have you seen an image of ice crashing into the sea from a melting glacier, or a sad-eyed seal atop a floe, as part of… Read More

In this Dec. 3, 2015 file photo, The Upper Big Branch Miners Memorial is shown in Whitesville, W.Va.

WV Remembers Upper Big Branch Mine Disaster On 11th Anniversary

By:
Posted on:

RALEIGH COUNTY, W.Va. (OVR) — Monday marks 11 years since the Upper Big Branch coal mine disaster in Raleigh County, West Virginia, where 29 miners were killed on April 5, 2010. Federal mine safety investigators determined that a buildup of methane gas and coal dust led to the explosion at the Massey Energy-owned mine. It… Read More

An X-ray image of an Appalachian coal miner with black lung lesions.

Study Shows Bias, Conflicts Of Interest Among Doctors Who Read Black Lung X-rays

By:
Posted on:

Doctors hired by coal companies in black lung cases are far less likely to diagnose the disease in X-rays than are independent doctors or those who are hired by coal miners, a new study has concluded, pointing to conflicts of interest in the system that sick miners use to receive assistance. The doctors who worked… Read More

Piles of coal

Coal Mine Safety Regulators Issue COVID Protection Guidelines, But No Regulations

By:
Posted on:

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (OVR) — The U.S. Department of Labor announced Wednesday stronger coronavirus safety guidance intended to keep coal miners safe from COVID-19 in the workplace. However, the Labor Department’s Mine Safety and Health Administration stopped short of issuing an emergency standard — as the mine workers’ union had requested — and instead kept to… Read More

Protesting miners blocked the tracks in the morning fog.

Blackjewel Coal Moves To Liquidate, Leaving Millions Unpaid To Workers And Regulators

By:
Posted on:

WHITESBURGH, Ky. (OVR) — The convoluted bankruptcy of coal company Blackjewel has hit another turn of events as the company’s former CEO moved to liquidate the company. A federal judge is considering a motion submitted last week to convert the bankruptcy from Chapter 11 to Chapter 7. That would mean that instead of exiting bankruptcy… Read More

West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin with miners on Capitol Hill.

Lawmakers, Union Urge Mine Safety Regulators to Act on Silica Dust

By:
Posted on:

WASHINGTON, D.C. (OVR) — A group of Ohio Valley senators says a watchdog agency’s recent report shows that federal regulators must do more to protect coal miners from silica dust, an especially toxic form of dust created when mining equipment cuts into rock layers near coal seams. In a Monday morning press release, six Democratic senators,… Read More

An X-ray image of an Appalachian coal miner with black lung lesions.

Federal Watchdog Finds Coal Safety Regulator Not Protecting Miners From Silica Dust

By:
Posted on:

WASHINGTON, D.C. (OVR) — The Mine Safety and Health Administration is not doing enough to protect coal miners from deadly silica dust, according to a new report from the Department of Labor’s Office of the Inspector General. The IG found that MSHA’s standards for exposure to deadly silica dust were out of date, and MSHA lacked… Read More

A coal silo near the old Marsh Fork Elementary School.

Advocates Say Citizen Mining Complaint Process Weakened By Rule Change

By:
Posted on:

MORGANTOWN, W. Va. (OVR) — Environmental and community advocates in Appalachian coal communities are concerned about a new federal rule, finalized this week, that is changing the process that allows citizens to file complaints about polluting coal mining operations. The Department of the Interior’s Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement said in a Tuesday press release that… Read More

Murray Energy CEO Bob Murray speaks at the EnVision Forum

Ohio Valley Coal Mine Executive Bob Murray Dead at 80

By:
Posted on:

ST. CLAIRSVILLE, Ohio (OVR) — Robert E. Murray, the founder and former president and CEO of Murray Energy Corp., formerly the largest privately-held underground coal company in the country, has died. He was 80 years old. Murray’s death was reported Sunday evening by television stations WTOV9 in Steubenville, Ohio, and WOWK in Huntington, West Virginia. According to the news… Read More

Murray Energy CEO Bob Murray speaks at the EnVision Forum

Bob Murray Announces Retirement From Coal Company He Founded

By:
Posted on:

ST. CLAIRSVILLE, Ohio (OVR) — After applying for black lung benefits, Robert Murray, founder and former president of the now-bankrupt coal company Murray Energy Corp., announced Monday he was leaving the business after more than 60 years in the industry. Murray Energy emerged from bankruptcy protection last month as American Consolidated Natural Resources (ACNR). The 80-year-old Murray was named chairman… Read More

Murray Energy CEO Bob Murray speaks at the EnVision Forum

Bob Murray, Who Fought Black Lung Regulations As A Coal Operator, Has Filed For Black Lung Benefits

By:
Posted on:

SAINT CLAIRSVILLE, OH (OVR) — Robert E. Murray, the former CEO and president of the now-bankrupt Murray Energy, has filed an application with the U.S. Department of Labor for black lung benefits. For years, Murray and his company fought against federal mine safety regulations aimed at reducing the debilitating disease. “I founded the company and… Read More

Murray Energy CEO Bob Murray speaks at the EnVision Forum

Murray Energy Exits Bankruptcy, Rehires Union Miners

By:
Posted on:

ST. CLAIRSVILLE, Ohio (OVR) — Coal mining giant Murray Energy Corp. has emerged from bankruptcy with a new name and a commitment to rehire all of its former union employees, according to a news release from the United Mine Workers of America. UMWA President Cecil Roberts said on Wednesday that a new collective bargaining agreement has… Read More

Piles of coal

Remembering A Miner Who Personified Coal’s Contributions And Costs

By:
Posted on:

Charles Wayne Stanley ran underground mining machines for some 20 years, cutting coal from beneath the hills where Virginia meets Kentucky along the Cumberland ridge. He spent another decade as a roof bolter, work that kept the rock above from falling in on his fellow miners. Stanley was 53 when the Ohio Valley ReSource and… Read More

Miners assemble on railroad tracks to block a shipment of coal from a Blackjewel mine.

Former Blackjewel Miners Could Get More Money From Proposed Settlement

By:
Posted on:

CASPER, Wyo. (OVR) — A proposed $17.3 million settlement of a class action lawsuit would provide additional payment for hundreds of Appalachian coal miners who were suddenly left jobless by the abrupt bankruptcy of the Blackjewel mining company. The settlement must be approved by the judge overseeing the complicated Blackjewel bankruptcy case. Although it is not… Read More

President Donald Trump speaks from the South Lawn of the White House on the fourth day of the Republican National Convention, Thursday, Aug. 27, 2020, in Washington.

“False Hope” or Four More Years? Ohio Valley Stakeholders Reflect On Trump Energy Policy

By:
Posted on:

WASHINGTON, D.C. (OVR) — In 2016, then-candidate Donald Trump was all-in on the fossil fuel industry. In a 2016 rally in Charleston, West Virginia, the candidate proudly accepted an endorsement from that state’s coal association, donning a hardhat while he mimed digging coal. To thundering applause, he promised to bring back coal jobs to the struggling… Read More

Piles of coal

Mine Safety Officials Won’t Do More To Protect Coal Miners From COVID-19, Letter Says

By:
Posted on:

WASHINGTON, D.C. (OVR) —The Mine Safety and Health Administration is declining to issue an emergency temporary standard that could protect coal miners whose jobs make them vulnerable to the coronavirus. That’s according to an August 14 letter from Department of Labor Deputy Assistant Secretary Joe Wheeler to West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin. MSHA can issue emergency temporary… Read More

FILE – This April 4, 2017, file photo shows the entrance to FirstEnergy Corp.'s Davis-Besse Nuclear Power Station in Oak Harbor, Ohio.

Federal PAC Donations Show Ohio Valley Lawmakers Raked In Thousands From Utility FirstEnergy

By:
Posted on:

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. (OVR) — Lawmakers from across the Ohio Valley have received nearly half a million dollars in campaign contributions from 2019-2020 from a political action committee associated with FirstEnergy Corp., the electric utility implicated in a $61 million bribery and racketeering scheme related to Ohio’s controversial energy bill that bailed out several struggling nuclear and… Read More

Piles of coal

Contura Energy Will Accelerate Exit From Thermal Coal Business, Citing Global Transition Away From Fossil Fuels

By:
Posted on:

BRISTOL, Tenn. (OVR) — A major Ohio Valley coal producer announced last week it will speed up its exit from producing coal used to generate electricity. In a call with shareholders last week, Contura Energy, Inc., said the move is tied to the ongoing global transition away from fossil fuels. “We recognize that the world is transitioning… Read More

Piles of coal

Oversight Office: MSHA Should Do More To Protect Miners In Pandemic

By:
Posted on:

WASHINGTON, D.C. (OVR) — The federal Mine Safety and Health Administration has not done enough to protect coal miners during the coronavirus pandemic, according to a report from an oversight agency released Tuesday. Through interviews with MSHA officials and union representatives, as well as reviews of state and national policies, the Department of Labor’s Office of the Inspector… Read More

Miners assemble on railroad tracks to block a shipment of coal from a Blackjewel mine.

No Pay, We Stay: A Look Back at the 2019 Protest that Rocked Appalachia

By:
Posted on:

CUMBERLAND, Ky. (OVR) — It’s a quiet, foggy morning on Highway 119 in Cumberland, Kentucky. A railroad track runs along the highway, and here, Sand Hill Bottom Road crosses the tracks and turns to the right, leaving a rough triangle of gravel spattered with trash. You can hear crickets chirping, birds twittering, cars passing on 119…. Read More

Piles of coal

Coal Company Rhino Resource Partners Files For Bankruptcy

By:
Posted on:

LEXINGTON, Ky. (OVR) — Kentucky-based coal company Rhino Resource Partners LP filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy on Wednesday, joining a growing list of Ohio Valley coal producers seeking financial restructuring as the U.S. coal industry continues to struggle. According to court documents, the company and its subsidiaries currently employ about 550 workers at underground and surface… Read More