Losing another mountain

Stephen Crowley/NY Times

This New York Times piece describes the struggle to save one West Virginia mountain — by building a wind farm.

Critics say the practice, known as “mountaintop removal mining,” is as devastating to the local environment as it is economically efficient for coal companies, one of which is poised to begin carving up Coal River Mountain.

At least one study has shown that a wind project could be a feasible alternative to coal mining here, although the coal industry’s control over the land and the uncertain and often tenuous financial prospects of wind generation appear to make it unlikely to be pursued. That, residents say, would be a mistake.

“If we don’t stop this,” Ms. Scarbro says, adjusting the flowers on her husband’s grave, “one day we’ll be standing on a big pile of rock and debris, and we’ll be asking, ‘What do we do now?’ ”

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