Mountaintop removal mining

mountaintop removalmountain top removalOhio Valley Environmental Coalitionmountaintop removal coal miningMountaintop miningmountaintop coal miningmountaintop removal minemountaintop-removalmountaintop removal coal-miningmountaintop removal mining with valley fills
Mountaintop removal mining (MTR), also known as mountaintop mining (MTM), is a form of surface mining at the summit or summit ridge of a mountain.wikipedia
223 Related Articles

Surface mining

strip miningstrip minesurface mine
Mountaintop removal mining (MTR), also known as mountaintop mining (MTM), is a form of surface mining at the summit or summit ridge of a mountain.
Surface mining, including strip mining, open-pit mining and mountaintop removal mining, is a broad category of mining in which soil and rock overlying the mineral deposit (the overburden) are removed, in contrast to underground mining, in which the overlying rock is left in place, and the mineral is removed through shafts or tunnels.

Coal mining

coal minecollierycoal miner
This method of coal mining is conducted in the Appalachian Mountains in the eastern United States.
Mountaintop removal combines area and contour strip mining methods.

Appalachian Mountains

AppalachiansAppalachianAppalachian Mountain
This method of coal mining is conducted in the Appalachian Mountains in the eastern United States.
The mountain top removal method of coal mining, in which entire mountain tops are removed, is currently threatening vast areas and ecosystems of the Appalachian Mountain region.


mineminescopper mine
Increased demand for coal in the United States, sparked by the 1973 and 1979 petroleum crises, created incentives for a more economical form of coal mining than the traditional underground mining methods involving hundreds of workers, triggering the first widespread use of MTR.
Techniques of surface mining include: open-pit mining, which is the recovery of materials from an open pit in the ground, quarrying, identical to open-pit mining except that it refers to sand, stone and clay; strip mining, which consists of stripping surface layers off to reveal ore/seams underneath; and mountaintop removal, commonly associated with coal mining, which involves taking the top of a mountain off to reach ore deposits at depth.

Mountaintop Removal (film)

Mountain Top RemovalMountaintop Removal
The film explores how mountaintop removal mining in West Virginia has affected local communities.

Catherine Pancake

Her documentary film Black Diamonds (2006), an examination of mountaintop removal mining, has received a number of awards.

Burning the Future: Coal in America

The film focuses on the impacts of mountaintop mining in the Appalachians, where mountain ridges are scraped away by heavy machinery to access coal seams below, a process that is cheaper and faster than traditional mining methods but is damaging to the environment.

Julia Bonds

Judy Bonds
She has been called "the godmother of the anti-mountaintop removal movement."

The Last Mountain

The film explores the consequences of mining and burning coal, with a particular focus on the use of a method for coal strip-mining in Appalachia commonly known as mountaintop removal mining.


mountain peopleAppalachianAppalachian region
It occurs most commonly in West Virginia and Eastern Kentucky, the top two coal-producing states in Appalachia, with each state using approximately 1,000 tonnes of explosives per day for surface mining.
Mountaintop removal, a form of surface mining, is a highly controversial mining practice in central Appalachia due to its negative impacts on the environment and health of local residents.

Clean Water Act

Federal Water Pollution Control ActNational Pollutant Discharge Elimination SystemNPDES
On four occasions, federal courts have ruled that the US Army Corps of Engineers violated the Clean Water Act by issuing such permits.
Mountaintop removal mining requires a section 404 permit when soil and rock from the mining operation is placed in streams and wetlands (commonly called a "valley fill").


deforestedland clearingforest clearing
Land is deforested prior to mining operations and the resultant lumber is either sold or burned.

Robert F. Kennedy Jr.

Robert F. Kennedy, Jr.Robert Kennedy Jr.Robert F. Kennedy Jr
Under Kennedy's leadership, Waterkeeper launched its "Clean Coal is a Deadly Lie" campaign in 2001, bringing dozens of lawsuits targeting mining practices, which include mountaintop removal, slurry pond construction, and targeting mercury emissions and coal ash piles by coal burning utilities.

Massey Energy

Massey Energy CompanyA.T. Massey Coal CompanyA.T. Massey
Massey Energy Company is currently appealing a 2007 ruling, but has been allowed to continue mining in the meantime because "most of the substantial harm has already occurred," according to the judge.

Liam Wilson

Concerned about environmental causes, Liam wore a shirt with the homemade message "Stop MTM/VF" on The Dillinger Escape Plan's February 2, 2008 appearance on Late Night with Conan O'Brien.

Environmental justice and coal mining in Appalachia

Coal mining in Appalachiaenvironmentalist rhetoricimpacts on Appalachian communities
Research shows that people who live in close proximity to mountaintop removal (MTR) mines have higher mortality rates than average, and are more likely to live in poverty be exposed to harmful environmental conditions than people in otherwise comparable parts of the region.

Maria Gunnoe

Maria Gunnoe (born 1968) is an environmentalist who opposes mountaintop removal mining, and is a winner of the Goldman Prize and Wallenberg Medal.

Environmental impact of the coal industry

Environmental effects of coalCoal burningcoal pollution
In case of mountaintop removal, tops are removed from mountains or hills to expose thick coal seams underneath.

Larry Gibson

He also was a board member for the Ohio Valley Environmental Coalition.

Silas House

House, Silas
Between 2005 and 2010 House was very visible in the fight against mountaintop removal mining, an environmentally devastating form of coal mining that blasts the entire top off a mountain and fills the valley below with the debris.

Wendell Berry

Wendell Erdman Berry
Berry, with 14 other protesters, spent the weekend of February 12, 2011 locked in the Kentucky governor's office to demand an end to mountaintop removal coal mining.

Caroline Herring

Herring is best known for her historical story songs, based on such various characters as a 19th-century slave named Rachel and her lover, Columbus Patton (“Mistress”); child murderer Susan Smith (“Paper Gown”); American painter Walter Inglis Anderson (“Tales of the Islander”); Mae Frances Moultrie, one of the 1961 Freedom Riders (“White Dress”); Jeremy Davidson, a child killed during an Appalachian mountaintop removal mining incident (“Black Mountain Lullaby”); and Marion King, who suffered a miscarriage after being beaten by deputy sheriff in Georgia during the Albany Movement (“Camilla”).

Ann Pancake

Ann provided some initial research and interview assistance for the film Black Diamonds: Mountaintop Removal and the Fight for Coalfield Justice (2006).


peakmountain peakpeaks
Mountaintop removal mining (MTR), also known as mountaintop mining (MTM), is a form of surface mining at the summit or summit ridge of a mountain.