Distributor:  Global Environmental Justice
Length:  95 minutes
Date:  2011
Genre:  Expository
Language:  English
Color/BW:  Color
Closed captioning available

Curator

Curator imageAmity Doolittle, Senior Lecturer and Research Scientist, Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies

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The Last Mountain

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* New film added Fall 2020 * 
The Last Mountain documents the struggles of a small West Virginia community fighting to preserve Coal River Mountain from mountaintop removal (MTR) coal mining and to expose the impact of the coal industry on their lives and health.

The Last Mountain

 

Curator
Amity Doolittle, Senior Lecturer at the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies

Why I selected this film
This film makes an important point about the practice of mountaintop removal (MTR) and its devastating consequences on communities and the environment. The film highlights how a small group of citizens in the valleys of Appalachia is trying to stop big coal corporations from continuing the practice of MTR in order to protect their health and environment.

Teacher's guide
Please see the teacher's guide for maps, background information, suggested subjects, questions and activities. The guide was written by Caroline Scanlan with research support from Liz Felker and Elham Shabahat, graduate students at the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies.

Synopsis
The Last Mountain documents the struggles of a small West Virginia community fighting to preserve Coal River Mountain from mountaintop removal (MTR) coal mining. While the film explains many of the detrimental effects that MTR mining has on local forests and streams, its true impact rests on the personal stories shared by so many residents whose health and well-being have been negatively affected by the nearby coal industry.

Ultimately, the strength of the movie lies in its ability to both highlight local efforts of resistance and contextualize the events occurring in Coal River Valley within greater national patterns of energy production and consumption. As Maria Gunnoe, a local activist, explains, "You're connected to coal whether you realize it or not. Everybody's connected to this. And everybody's causing it. And everybody's allowing it."

The environmental justice focus of the film.
People and residents living in Coal River Valley are suffering the negative consequences of the coal industry, including environmental contamination from MTR mining, high rates of asthma, brain damage, and cancer, among other health burdens. Environmental justice comes into play when residents organize against powerful coal companies through both local acts of resistance and partnering with outside activists who engage in non-violent civil disobedience. The difficulties that communities face in fighting these actors are also explored in this film, when powerful corporations (through financing campaigns and lobbying) are able to influence politics and the enforcement of environmental regulations.

Download the teacher's guide for The Last Mountain (PDF)

Last Mountain

WEBVTT

00:00:03.770 --> 00:00:19.880
[MUSIC]

00:00:21.460 --> 00:00:24.350
-I don\'t think people understand
where electricity comes from.

00:00:25.770 --> 00:00:28.020
I think most people feel it\'s an entitlement.

00:00:29.600 --> 00:00:32.750
It’s contained in the Bill of Rights
and where everybody\'s entitled to it

00:00:34.260 --> 00:00:36.310
and we don\'t need to worry about
where it comes from

00:00:36.310 --> 00:00:38.440
because every time
I flip the switch it comes on.

00:00:42.510 --> 00:01:30.530
[MUSIC]

00:01:33.220 --> 00:01:35.530
-In the heart of Appalachian coal country

00:01:37.570 --> 00:01:41.080
amid some of
America\'s most biologically diverse forest

00:01:42.570 --> 00:01:44.170
stands Coal River Mountain.

00:01:46.040 --> 00:01:48.710
-Coal River Mountain is
our last great mountain here

00:01:48.710 --> 00:01:51.350
in the Quarry Valley
that hasn\'t been blasted to ashes.

00:01:55.730 --> 00:01:59.480
-I know that we live in
a very intelligent country

00:01:59.480 --> 00:02:04.440
that has the ability to create energy
without blowing up mountains.

00:02:06.840 --> 00:02:12.640
-These coal companies are absolutely raping
and stealing the land, water,

00:02:12.660 --> 00:02:15.130
and air that all of us thought was ours.

00:02:18.820 --> 00:02:22.000
-People have had enough
and they\'re standing up to the coal company.

00:02:25.820 --> 00:02:28.710
-The greatest reform
of the coal mining industry

00:02:28.710 --> 00:02:30.860
is being pushed by citizen activists.

00:02:31.970 --> 00:02:34.820
The fight over Coal River Mountain
is a fight about democracy.

00:02:38.440 --> 00:02:41.880
-I feel there\'s a huge crime going on
and I have a right

00:02:41.880 --> 00:02:46.910
as a citizen to get in the way of
a crime taking place and that\'s what I did.

00:02:47.550 --> 00:03:16.840
[MUSIC]

00:03:18.240 --> 00:03:22.330
-My name\'s Maria Gunnoe. I\'m from Bobwhite,
in Boone County, West Virginia.

00:03:22.330 --> 00:03:24.220
In the southern part of West Virginia.

00:03:25.220 --> 00:03:26.930
I live in between two mountains.

00:03:27.400 --> 00:03:31.820
You\'ve got two huge mountains that come to
the middle and the middle is called a hollow.

00:03:32.060 --> 00:03:36.440
Our property is at the very mouth
of the hollow where the mountains meet.

00:03:39.020 --> 00:03:42.710
My grandfather was a coal miner
and my father was a coal miner and I,

00:03:42.710 --> 00:03:45.710
well, a lot of the people in my family
has been coal miners.

00:03:46.240 --> 00:03:48.820
I have two brothers
that currently work as coal miners.

00:03:49.620 --> 00:03:51.710
[MUSIC]

00:03:52.350 --> 00:03:55.240
Jupiter Coal Company started in 2000.

00:03:55.530 --> 00:03:56.820
They cut the trees down and then

00:03:57.600 --> 00:03:59.060
they started pushing the--

00:03:59.060 --> 00:04:01.840
what they call the overburden
which is everything except the coal

00:04:02.130 --> 00:04:03.660
over on top of the trees

00:04:05.260 --> 00:04:06.750
and then they started blasting.

00:04:12.260 --> 00:04:13.550
-Oops, there it is, there it is.

00:04:17.240 --> 00:04:18.200
Bastards.

00:04:19.970 --> 00:04:22.060
Now, where is it going to come
right down on top of us.

00:04:23.400 --> 00:04:26.510
-Massey went up there
and blew up half the damn mountain

00:04:26.510 --> 00:04:29.480
and these boulders come down through here
and this one landed right here.

00:04:29.530 --> 00:04:31.330
Maybe 150 from our garden.

00:04:32.750 --> 00:04:34.330
My cousin\'s house is directly below that

00:04:34.330 --> 00:04:37.060
and with that comes
all this dust down through here.

00:04:37.370 --> 00:04:40.970
This is sandstone you can see
the glass in it and that\'s silica

00:04:41.350 --> 00:04:44.750
that turns into silica dust
and it goes in your lungs

00:04:44.750 --> 00:04:48.620
and that\'s called silicosis
and people die of that.

00:04:57.480 --> 00:04:58.930
-Wanting to get the word out

00:04:59.240 --> 00:05:02.770
West Virginian activists contacted
Bobby Kennedy, Jr.,

00:05:03.040 --> 00:05:06.440
a writer, broadcaster,
an environmental lawyer.

00:05:07.770 --> 00:05:10.530
-I recently flew over the coal fields
in the Appalachians

00:05:10.530 --> 00:05:13.480
and I saw something that
if the American people could see it

00:05:13.480 --> 00:05:15.080
there’ll be a revolution in this country.

00:05:15.400 --> 00:05:20.000
-Charleston [?] skyline seven,
three, five, five, tango leaving 2,900.

00:05:20.000 --> 00:05:23.280
-We are cutting down
the Appalachian Mountains literally.

00:05:23.660 --> 00:05:27.000
-The whole mine goes all way back 10 or 12 miles.

00:05:27.550 --> 00:05:29.220
Absolutely gigantic.

00:05:29.820 --> 00:05:33.350
-They’re blowing the tops off the mountains
to get at the coal seams beneath.

00:05:35.330 --> 00:05:37.510
-Coal is sort of like a layer cake.

00:05:37.660 --> 00:05:41.200
You\'ve got a layer of rock,
a layer of coal, a layer of rock, a layer of coal

00:05:41.550 --> 00:05:43.530
and they just keep this process up

00:05:43.530 --> 00:05:46.240
until they literally reduce
the mountain to rubble.

00:05:48.440 --> 00:05:52.910
-They detonate 2,500 tons
of explosives every day.

00:05:53.710 --> 00:05:58.130
An explosive power the size
of a Hiroshima bomb once a week.

00:05:58.420 --> 00:06:01.350
[BLAST]

00:06:01.640 --> 00:06:03.730
-You feel you\'re under attack.

00:06:04.310 --> 00:06:08.080
It\'s happening two or three times
a day every day.

00:06:09.330 --> 00:06:21.040
[ROARING]

00:06:26.240 --> 00:06:29.950
-Sometimes they\'ll take
as much as 800-900 feet off a mountain

00:06:30.280 --> 00:06:35.000
and everything that was the mountain
it\'s just dumped down in the valleys.

00:06:35.770 --> 00:06:39.350
[ROARING]

00:06:41.350 --> 00:06:44.680
It’s the cheapest way to do it and
it\'s the most highly profitable way to do it

00:06:44.680 --> 00:06:45.910
and that\'s why they\'re doing it.

00:06:50.130 --> 00:06:53.970
-Mountaintop mining is an accepted means
stated in the federal law

00:06:53.970 --> 00:06:57.200
and has been occurring here in West Virginia
for the last 35 years

00:06:57.710 --> 00:07:00.910
and it\'s dictated by the geology,
the natural geology,

00:07:01.280 --> 00:07:03.600
and as the coal seams lack close
to the top of the hill

00:07:03.600 --> 00:07:07.040
and it\'s the most efficient way to remove
the coal from the mountains.

00:07:10.570 --> 00:07:12.680
I think the groups that are opposed to that

00:07:12.680 --> 00:07:16.280
and use that as the icon
for their opposition are using it

00:07:16.280 --> 00:07:18.820
because of
the emotional impact it has on people

00:07:18.820 --> 00:07:21.880
when they see a picture
of an active operation

00:07:21.880 --> 00:07:25.420
which is nothing more than
a construction site that is unfinished.

00:07:28.330 --> 00:07:31.930
Now, to go back and take a picture
of that mine site after it\'s completed

00:07:32.840 --> 00:07:34.600
is a much different picture.

00:07:35.110 --> 00:07:36.950
They return that same dirt and rock

00:07:37.660 --> 00:07:41.020
to the mountaintop
and reconstruct the mountaintop.

00:07:50.000 --> 00:07:52.550
This is what the coal industry
is bragging about.

00:07:52.550 --> 00:07:54.020
This is as good as it gets.

00:07:55.020 --> 00:07:59.280
Theoretically this is supposed to be an oak
and maple forest.

00:07:59.280 --> 00:08:00.280
-That’s right.

00:08:00.280 --> 00:08:03.330
-But in reality
this grass isn\'t even going to last.

00:08:03.330 --> 00:08:08.280
-No. What the regulatory authority
does is allow them

00:08:08.280 --> 00:08:12.080
to substitute the rock
for the original topsoil.

00:08:12.330 --> 00:08:15.460
-This is what the state of West Virginia
calls a soil substitute.

00:08:15.460 --> 00:08:16.130
-That\'s right.

00:08:16.420 --> 00:08:20.130
-The extraordinary thing about
this is how many lies they have to tell

00:08:20.530 --> 00:08:22.400
in order to make this whole fiction work.

00:08:22.400 --> 00:08:23.150
-That’s right.

00:08:23.150 --> 00:08:24.880
-They have to say that this is a forest.

00:08:24.880 --> 00:08:26.570
They have to say that this is soil

00:08:27.280 --> 00:08:30.570
and the amazing thing
is how many people believe them.

00:08:30.820 --> 00:08:33.600
-That\'s right and I\'ve been astonished
over the years

00:08:33.600 --> 00:08:37.930
at how many people actually believe
that this is truly reclamation.

00:08:38.550 --> 00:08:40.680
-This is their version of a headwater stream.

00:08:40.930 --> 00:08:45.370
-They call this a stream substitute,
but that it really hasn\'t in life in it.

00:08:45.480 --> 00:08:46.440
-It’s plumbing.

00:08:46.910 --> 00:08:47.600
-That\'s all it is.

00:08:47.600 --> 00:08:51.350
-It’s plumbing. It’s not an ecology.
It’s a plumbing job.

00:08:51.800 --> 00:08:52.550
-That\'s right.

00:08:52.840 --> 00:08:54.820
-It concentrates the flow of water

00:08:54.820 --> 00:08:57.570
and that\'s one of the reasons
we have flooding problems downstream.

00:09:03.170 --> 00:09:10.550
[THUNDERSTORM]

00:09:12.710 --> 00:09:16.480
-About 4:30 in the evening it started raining
and it was pretty heavy rain.

00:09:18.220 --> 00:09:22.130
I think if we ended up with four
and a half inches of rain in four hours.

00:09:26.350 --> 00:09:28.880
There was nothing there to absorb
the rainfall

00:09:28.880 --> 00:09:31.750
and when it came washing off
the rock back here,

00:09:31.950 --> 00:09:34.080
it come washing off in a torrent.

00:09:40.110 --> 00:09:44.280
It turned this whole tiny stream
into a raging river that ran,

00:09:44.750 --> 00:09:48.150
well, it cut a chasm through
our property 67 feet wide.

00:09:50.130 --> 00:09:53.750
Myself and my husband and my children
were basically trapped

00:09:54.040 --> 00:09:56.330
in a flooding hollow with no way out.

00:10:01.260 --> 00:10:03.840
The flooding happens all through the valley.

00:10:06.750 --> 00:10:08.950
It happens every time it rains.

00:10:14.260 --> 00:10:16.680
The coal company engineer came right here
into my yard.

00:10:17.750 --> 00:10:21.910
He kept saying this isn\'t our fault.
This is an act of God.

00:10:21.910 --> 00:10:25.330
He continuously said this is an act of God.

00:10:27.550 --> 00:10:29.570
There was an act of God
that took place at night

00:10:29.570 --> 00:10:31.440
and it didn\'t have nothing to do
with that water.

00:10:32.220 --> 00:10:36.280
If it wasn\'t for the good Lord above me,
my family wouldn\'t be here

00:10:36.950 --> 00:10:40.840
and it really infuriated me when he said that.

00:10:41.280 --> 00:10:46.800
I believe that\'s a big part of the fuel
that keeps my fire burning.

00:10:58.460 --> 00:11:02.570
-I was born about a mile from here--
two miles from here at Levels,

00:11:02.570 --> 00:11:03.710
West Virginia in a coal camp.

00:11:04.480 --> 00:11:08.460
My dad worked for the coal company
and we lived in a coal company house.

00:11:11.150 --> 00:11:16.220
Came back here in 2000, decided
we just want to be back in the mountains

00:11:16.220 --> 00:11:20.400
and just live
a nice peaceful life fishing, honey,

00:11:21.460 --> 00:11:22.280
living a good life.

00:11:22.600 --> 00:11:24.930
Having a garden. Back to my roots

00:11:25.800 --> 00:11:27.930
and I got back here.
I started hearing these blasts.

00:11:29.150 --> 00:11:32.800
[BLASTS]

00:11:35.530 --> 00:11:40.080
The Coal River Valley is very narrow valley
and on the right side is Cherry Pond Mountain

00:11:40.510 --> 00:11:42.420
and it is being totally annihilated.

00:11:42.420 --> 00:11:47.240
That’s Twilight, that’s Lindytown,
that\'s Montcoal, that\'s Shumate.

00:11:47.240 --> 00:11:51.370
The entire Cherry Pond Mountain which was a
duplicate of Coal River Mountain at one time

00:11:51.770 --> 00:11:53.080
has been totally destroyed.

00:11:54.400 --> 00:11:58.840
Directly below that are our communities
from Whitesville to Glen Daniel,

00:11:58.840 --> 00:12:03.570
25 mile stretch of small communities of
people that\'s lived here for 200 years or more.

00:12:04.220 --> 00:12:06.710
Coal River Mountain is on the left side.

00:12:07.240 --> 00:12:09.420
Now, on the other side of Coal River Mountain

00:12:09.420 --> 00:12:11.970
is Kayford Mountain
which has been totally wiped out.

00:12:12.170 --> 00:12:13.350
It is gone.

00:12:14.530 --> 00:12:16.440
Coal River Mountain stands as a buffer.

00:12:17.600 --> 00:12:23.240
It’s our only buffer to protect us
from getting totally overwhelmed

00:12:23.240 --> 00:12:26.060
with blasting dust and poison water
and everything else.

00:12:26.600 --> 00:12:29.240
We have to have that mountain
or we have to leave.

00:12:54.510 --> 00:13:01.400
[MUSIC]

00:13:16.510 --> 00:13:18.800
-We\'re down here on these folks property

00:13:18.800 --> 00:13:21.930
and we\'re going to sample their stream
below this mine site.

00:13:26.400 --> 00:13:30.200
Heavy metals are one
of the worst things we see.

00:13:30.930 --> 00:13:34.150
Lead and arsenic and other elements
that people know about,

00:13:34.150 --> 00:13:37.370
but also selenium and some
of these other elements

00:13:37.370 --> 00:13:39.150
that people really don\'t know about

00:13:39.150 --> 00:13:41.620
and really we as scientists don\'t know
that much about.

00:13:43.110 --> 00:13:47.110
0.484 total dissolved solids.

00:13:49.550 --> 00:13:51.040
They look like coal, but it\'s not.

00:13:51.840 --> 00:13:54.840
Manganese deposition on these rocks

00:13:55.460 --> 00:13:59.460
and that\'s because there\'s a lot of manganese
in the water coming out of this valley fill.

00:14:00.530 --> 00:14:01.680
Look at my fingers there.

00:14:05.510 --> 00:14:11.240
In this area it\'s ruined their wells.
It’s ruined their springs and it\'s--

00:14:11.440 --> 00:14:12.640
their very existence.

00:14:13.240 --> 00:14:17.770
The number one thing that humans
or any other organism needs to exist is water.

00:14:19.040 --> 00:14:24.530
[MUSIC]

00:14:28.200 --> 00:14:30.000
-My name is Jennifer Hall Massey.

00:14:30.000 --> 00:14:34.130
I live in a small town
we call Prenter, West Virginia.

00:14:40.040 --> 00:14:43.220
Where we\'re standing now is actually
the center of the cluster

00:14:43.220 --> 00:14:44.880
of brain tumors that we experienced.

00:14:45.370 --> 00:14:48.170
There have been multiple brain tumors
throughout the community,

00:14:48.170 --> 00:14:51.060
but there were six in particular
that lived very close together.

00:14:52.260 --> 00:14:56.930
Right down the road here in the end
of the mobile home park we lost my brother.

00:14:56.930 --> 00:14:58.400
He was 29 years old.

00:15:02.620 --> 00:15:06.550
The gentleman that lived directly beside
of him was in his mid-50s

00:15:06.770 --> 00:15:10.330
and he also lost his life to the brain tumor.
His name was Ronald Smith.

00:15:11.510 --> 00:15:14.800
There was an infant that lived two homes
behind my brother,

00:15:15.350 --> 00:15:19.530
the little Jones girl who was born
with a cancerous brain tumor.

00:15:21.950 --> 00:15:25.750
Her neighbor four-year-old, Tasha Brown,
also developed a brain tumor.

00:15:25.950 --> 00:15:27.040
She did survive.

00:15:28.260 --> 00:15:33.150
Now to the right of us here we lost--
we call him Little John.

00:15:33.280 --> 00:15:35.130
His name was John Donoghue, II.

00:15:35.130 --> 00:15:38.820
He lived in this home right here
and he was 37 years old.

00:15:38.820 --> 00:15:41.570
He was the first that our community lost
to a brain tumor.

00:15:43.530 --> 00:15:48.820
National average for brain tumor is one
to 100,000 and we had six that live side by side.

00:15:53.110 --> 00:15:56.480
The only thing we have in common is
the fact that we all have well water.

00:16:21.350 --> 00:16:23.240
This filter is about two weeks old.

00:16:23.750 --> 00:16:25.240
It’s supposed to last six months.

00:16:25.240 --> 00:16:29.260
Normally we get about three to four weeks out
of a filter before they completely stuck up.

00:16:35.330 --> 00:16:38.620
-Millions of people get their water supplies

00:16:38.910 --> 00:16:42.420
from the headwaters coming off
the Cumberland Plateau bioregion.

00:16:44.310 --> 00:16:48.280
Mountaintop coal mining is literally
threatening the water supplies

00:16:48.280 --> 00:16:51.970
of tens of millions of people in one
of the fastest-growing regions

00:16:51.970 --> 00:16:52.970
in the United States.

00:16:53.370 --> 00:16:57.400
-That materials not coming out.
It’s in the human water supply.

00:17:02.420 --> 00:17:06.660
-The water and the fish are not owned
by the governor or the Fisheries Department.

00:17:06.910 --> 00:17:09.840
They’re owned by the people.
Everybody has the right to use it.

00:17:10.730 --> 00:17:13.820
This is ancient law.
It goes back to Roman times.

00:17:13.820 --> 00:17:15.310
It was in the code of Justinian.

00:17:25.970 --> 00:17:29.240
When Roman law broke down
in Europe during the Dark Ages

00:17:29.600 --> 00:17:33.680
you saw the feudal kings,
the local Lords privatizing the commons.

00:17:35.240 --> 00:17:38.820
For example in England King John
said the deer

00:17:38.820 --> 00:17:43.620
which were once a critical food source
for the poor can no longer be hunted

00:17:43.620 --> 00:17:46.530
by the poor only the nobility can hunt them.

00:17:46.910 --> 00:17:48.820
That’s what got him in trouble with Robin Hood.

00:17:50.000 --> 00:17:53.820
Those thefts,
those privatizations of the public commons

00:17:54.710 --> 00:17:59.480
so outraged the public
that they confronted King John of Runnymede,

00:17:59.750 --> 00:18:01.750
and they forced him to sign the Magna Carta

00:18:01.750 --> 00:18:05.570
which was the beginning
of constitutional democracy on our planet.

00:18:07.400 --> 00:18:14.750
[MUSIC]

00:18:16.930 --> 00:18:20.260
The law in this country up until the 1870s

00:18:20.570 --> 00:18:23.820
was that if somebody built a factory
near your home

00:18:24.880 --> 00:18:29.530
and smoke from that factory got into
your house as little as one day a year,

00:18:30.350 --> 00:18:32.840
you had an absolute right to shut down
that factory

00:18:33.620 --> 00:18:36.860
because that was a violation
of your property rights and of the commons,

00:18:38.620 --> 00:18:43.310
but those laws were eroded during the
industrial revolution by people who said,

00:18:43.680 --> 00:18:46.370
\"This is the future of America,
industrial growth,

00:18:46.820 --> 00:18:50.350
and we need to make it as easy as possible
for industry to flourish.

00:18:50.350 --> 00:18:52.020
We\'re going to allow people to pollute.\"

00:18:54.880 --> 00:19:00.770
-This water is not possible to be used
by any living creature of any kind.

00:19:04.060 --> 00:19:06.260
-I remember what it was like before [?].

00:19:06.840 --> 00:19:08.860
I remember the Cuyahoga River burning.

00:19:09.770 --> 00:19:13.220
I remember what the airs smelt like
in Washington DC at that time

00:19:13.220 --> 00:19:15.530
which wasn\'t even industrial city
and it stacked.

00:19:17.020 --> 00:19:24.220
This accumulation of the insults in 1972
of 20 million Americans out onto the street.

00:19:25.170 --> 00:19:28.220
A large public demonstration
in the United States history

00:19:28.820 --> 00:19:32.440
demanding that our political leaders
return to the American people

00:19:32.860 --> 00:19:35.420
ancient environmental rights
that had been stolen

00:19:35.420 --> 00:19:38.170
from our citizens over the previous 80 years.

00:19:39.330 --> 00:19:43.110
Politicians responded,
Republicans and Democrats, got together.

00:19:43.930 --> 00:19:46.310
Richard Nixon created EPA

00:19:46.310 --> 00:19:49.280
and signed a Clean Air Act,
the Clean Water Act into effect.

00:19:50.840 --> 00:19:54.600
We wrote 28 major environmental laws
over the next 10 years

00:19:55.040 --> 00:19:58.280
that protect our air and water
and endanger species and food safety.

00:20:00.060 --> 00:20:01.800
-It was a bipartisan era.

00:20:02.060 --> 00:20:04.310
We couldn\'t have gotten
this strong legislation

00:20:04.310 --> 00:20:07.420
without strong bipartisan support.

00:20:07.640 --> 00:20:12.930
I think that the Clean Water Act
when it passed Congress in 1972,

00:20:13.220 --> 00:20:15.460
I think it was a virtually unanimous vote

00:20:15.880 --> 00:20:20.020
and almost all of the major legislation
that we rely on today,

00:20:20.480 --> 00:20:23.680
really started in the early ‘70s.

00:20:33.480 --> 00:20:34.800
-Over the next 20 years,

00:20:35.260 --> 00:20:39.480
the coal industry, increasingly ignored
provisions in the Clean Water Act.

00:20:42.020 --> 00:20:46.440
-The Clean Water Act said
that you cannot put waste in the waters

00:20:46.440 --> 00:20:47.770
in the United States of America.

00:20:49.420 --> 00:20:51.660
Therefore mountaintop removal
was totally illegal

00:20:52.420 --> 00:20:56.130
and when they did try it
they usually got it slammed back at them.

00:20:56.280 --> 00:20:59.280
-We hadn\'t really been having
some great success here with litigation

00:20:59.280 --> 00:21:02.930
and with grassroots movement
opposing mountaintop removal

00:21:02.930 --> 00:21:06.420
and the coal industry became very nervous
about the upcoming election

00:21:06.840 --> 00:21:10.400
and threw its weight behind George Bush
in an extraordinary fashion.

00:21:10.600 --> 00:21:13.240
-We\'re going to be watching the traffic
around the Washington area

00:21:13.240 --> 00:21:15.420
and basically what we can tell you
right now downtown

00:21:15.420 --> 00:21:17.510
don\'t even think about driving west--

00:21:18.020 --> 00:21:21.040
-This Inauguration Day Parade
and swearing-in,

00:21:21.040 --> 00:21:23.370
is this more unusual
because of the number of protesters--

00:21:23.370 --> 00:21:26.020
-We don\'t yet know how many people
have been arrested.

00:21:37.750 --> 00:21:40.840
-Bush was quoted as saying soon
after his election

00:21:40.840 --> 00:21:43.570
in 2000 this was a coal-fired victory

00:21:44.840 --> 00:21:49.240
because of the huge increase
in coal industry contribution.

00:21:49.240 --> 00:21:52.170
Something like six or eight times
what they given the previous election.

00:21:53.440 --> 00:21:56.370
-I, George Walker Bush, do solemnly swear.

00:21:56.370 --> 00:21:58.600
-I, George Walker Bush do solemnly swear--

00:21:58.600 --> 00:22:03.620
-The top 100 posts, environmental posts,
were virtually all occupied

00:22:04.040 --> 00:22:08.080
by lobbyists from the worst of the worst,
of the worst polluters

00:22:10.080 --> 00:22:12.680
in the Department of Commerce
which regulates Fisheries,

00:22:12.680 --> 00:22:16.970
Department of Energy,
Department of Agriculture, the EPA, the FDA,

00:22:16.970 --> 00:22:20.330
the Department of Interior
and even the relevant divisions

00:22:20.330 --> 00:22:21.420
of the Justice Department.

00:22:23.150 --> 00:22:27.080
As head of public lands, Steven Griles,
mining industry lobbyists,

00:22:27.080 --> 00:22:30.550
who believes
that public lands are unconstitutional.

00:22:34.310 --> 00:22:37.460
-Steven Griles lobbied in favor
of mountaintop removal

00:22:37.460 --> 00:22:38.950
before he came into office.

00:22:39.310 --> 00:22:41.080
We knew the game was over.

00:22:42.880 --> 00:22:47.370
[MUSIC]

00:22:47.970 --> 00:22:51.240
-Peabody Coal and Massey Coal
and lobbyists for the industry

00:22:51.550 --> 00:22:55.020
met in the back doors of
the Interior Department with Steven Griles

00:22:55.480 --> 00:22:57.950
and they rewrote one word.

00:22:58.040 --> 00:23:01.910
The interpretation of one word
of the Clean Water Act,

00:23:01.910 --> 00:23:07.350
the definition of the word fill to change
30 years of statutory interpretation.

00:23:07.840 --> 00:23:11.110
-Instead of the primary purpose,
the Bush administration changed

00:23:11.240 --> 00:23:13.910
the phrase primary purpose
to the word effect.

00:23:15.440 --> 00:23:19.000
What was permissible after that
was anything that had the effect

00:23:19.480 --> 00:23:21.200
of creating dry land.

00:23:23.750 --> 00:23:27.930
Of course, putting garbage in water
has the effect of creating a dry spot,

00:23:30.530 --> 00:23:34.170
and that legalized mountaintop removal
for the first time.

00:23:39.060 --> 00:23:45.860
-Robert Kennedy, Jr. is lending his voice
to the fight against mountaintop removal.

00:23:46.060 --> 00:23:47.750
Here’s the article about it.

00:23:48.420 --> 00:23:50.510
My waitress job kept me afloat

00:23:50.880 --> 00:23:54.640
while I volunteered with many, many,
many different organizations

00:23:54.640 --> 00:23:58.510
to fight the destruction here
and our action for this time--

00:23:59.880 --> 00:24:04.680
I went to my state government thinking
they can\'t leave me like this.

00:24:04.680 --> 00:24:07.350
Somebody has to care about
what they\'re putting me through,

00:24:07.770 --> 00:24:10.260
and that what I found was
a lot of closed doors.

00:24:11.770 --> 00:24:16.200
-I called the governor\'s office and talk
with Matt Turner and I asked for a meeting.

00:24:16.970 --> 00:24:20.040
-Bo Webb has brought together
a group of local activists

00:24:20.040 --> 00:24:21.750
to plan a protest rally

00:24:21.820 --> 00:24:24.840
against the West Virginia Department
of Environmental Protection

00:24:26.950 --> 00:24:29.170
and he\'s asked Bobby Kennedy to help.

00:24:29.570 --> 00:24:30.280
-Hey, Marissa?

00:24:30.280 --> 00:24:31.280
-How are you doing?

00:24:31.280 --> 00:24:32.570
-Good. Good to see you.

00:24:32.570 --> 00:24:33.570
-Good to see you.

00:24:34.820 --> 00:24:35.860
-Did you pick a day?

00:24:36.570 --> 00:24:38.550
-We did. Yes, December 7th.

00:24:39.080 --> 00:24:40.860
-We have lobbied.

00:24:41.040 --> 00:24:44.200
We have written letters
through our officials with the agencies.

00:24:44.200 --> 00:24:45.770
We have made phone calls.

00:24:45.770 --> 00:24:48.020
We can\'t go to anywhere else, we\'re there.

00:24:49.020 --> 00:24:51.220
No’s one’s taking any action.

00:24:51.220 --> 00:24:53.910
No one’s intervening
so this is the people\'s intervention.

00:24:55.260 --> 00:24:58.400
What we hope to get out of this
is for the DEP to stop,

00:24:58.550 --> 00:25:00.620
revoke the permit, stop this.

00:25:00.620 --> 00:25:02.570
-I would love to come down for that.

00:25:02.570 --> 00:25:08.080
I don\'t know if I can make that day.
I\'d like to do it.

00:25:08.770 --> 00:25:12.970
-He\'s taken an issue in West Virginia,
but he doesn\'t have to be here for.

00:25:13.130 --> 00:25:17.460
Nobody expected Bobby Kennedy to come
and he keeps coming back on his own

00:25:17.750 --> 00:25:21.600
not for himself I think, but really
because he believes in helping this region.

00:25:24.220 --> 00:25:28.570
[CHEERS]

00:25:30.840 --> 00:25:34.660
-The rally takes place in Charleston,
the capital of West Virginia.

00:25:35.130 --> 00:25:38.350
Outside the headquarters of the Department
of Environmental Protection.

00:25:39.680 --> 00:25:41.820
-We’re here to save Coal River Mountain.

00:25:42.130 --> 00:25:44.530
We want the blasts to stop today.

00:25:44.950 --> 00:25:46.640
[CHEERS]

00:25:47.460 --> 00:25:51.200
-Coal companies have told
the miners their jobs are at risk.

00:25:52.480 --> 00:25:53.660
-You got the day off today?

00:25:53.910 --> 00:25:54.930
-Half a day to come down and--

00:26:00.910 --> 00:26:02.020
-Who’s coal?

00:26:02.020 --> 00:26:03.020
-Our coal.

00:26:03.020 --> 00:26:03.910
-Who’s mountain?

00:26:03.910 --> 00:26:04.800
-Our mountain.

00:26:04.800 --> 00:26:05.680
-Who’s job?

00:26:05.680 --> 00:26:06.680
-Our job.

00:26:06.680 --> 00:26:07.680
-Who’s Children?

00:26:07.680 --> 00:26:08.680
-Our children.

00:26:09.600 --> 00:26:13.860
-Good environmental policy
is identical to good economic policy.

00:26:14.370 --> 00:26:18.860
If we want to measure our economy
based upon how it produces jobs

00:26:18.860 --> 00:26:22.220
and the dignity of job over the generations,
over the long term.

00:26:24.220 --> 00:26:27.620
If on the other hand we want to do
what Massey coal

00:26:27.620 --> 00:26:29.680
and the big industry wants us to do,

00:26:29.910 --> 00:26:33.130
which is to treat the planet as
if it were business and liquidation,

00:26:33.530 --> 00:26:36.930
convert our natural resources
including the State of West Virginia

00:26:36.930 --> 00:26:42.080
to cash as quickly as possible of a few years
of pollution based prosperity.

00:26:42.330 --> 00:26:46.880
We can generate an instantaneous cash flow
and the illusion of a prosperous economy,

00:26:47.110 --> 00:26:49.280
our children are going to pay for our joyride.

00:26:49.970 --> 00:26:54.000
[CHEERS]

00:27:01.680 --> 00:27:04.570
I think, for me,
I was just dispositionally disposed

00:27:04.820 --> 00:27:06.020
towards activism.

00:27:08.280 --> 00:27:13.280
I made a decision when I was 10-years-old
to write a book about the environment.

00:27:13.970 --> 00:27:17.550
I never actually got around
to writing it till I was about 29,

00:27:18.000 --> 00:27:20.620
but I wrote a letter
to my uncle President Kennedy

00:27:20.840 --> 00:27:24.150
and I asked to come in and talk to him
about the environment.

00:27:27.600 --> 00:27:29.240
I bought him a pet salamander

00:27:30.660 --> 00:27:33.420
and he arranged for me to go
and interview members

00:27:33.420 --> 00:27:35.040
of his cabinet about the environment.

00:27:40.150 --> 00:27:43.480
When I was little Mclean,
Virginia was a rural paradise.

00:27:43.480 --> 00:27:45.400
It was horse farms. It was woodland

00:27:46.080 --> 00:27:49.550
and we spent every moment
that we could walking through the woods.

00:27:50.930 --> 00:27:53.480
Then one day the road builders came.

00:27:54.550 --> 00:27:57.950
They built
the four-lane highway through the woods.

00:27:59.730 --> 00:28:00.930
They covered the creek.

00:28:01.880 --> 00:28:03.750
They knocked down the mountain,

00:28:07.370 --> 00:28:13.620
and we looked at these people
as really as invaders and as criminals.

00:28:14.730 --> 00:28:17.570
We tried our best to stop them.
We’re only-- we were little kids.

00:28:17.570 --> 00:28:22.420
We were eight or nine years old
and we rolled the big concrete culverts down

00:28:22.420 --> 00:28:25.570
a hill away and we smash them and broke them.

00:28:28.080 --> 00:28:32.280
We got caught and I had to work all summer
with my brother to pay for the culverts,

00:28:34.020 --> 00:28:39.280
but I still had this feeling
that something was being stolen from me.

00:28:40.150 --> 00:28:44.330
[CHEERS]

00:28:45.730 --> 00:28:46.820
There’s a moral issue.

00:28:46.820 --> 00:28:50.820
We don\'t have a right to destroy something
that we cannot recreate.

00:28:51.310 --> 00:28:56.110
It was God who made these mountains and
it\'s Don Blankenship who is cutting them down.

00:28:58.260 --> 00:29:02.730
-Don Blankenship is
the chief executive officer of Massey Coal

00:29:03.280 --> 00:29:05.730
which has been the principal engine

00:29:06.330 --> 00:29:10.280
promoting the use of mountaintop
removal coal mining throughout Appalachia.

00:29:10.480 --> 00:29:14.460
-At Massey we produce more than coal.
We create opportunities.

00:29:14.460 --> 00:29:17.170
Opportunities
for American energy independence,

00:29:17.350 --> 00:29:21.460
opportunities for our members,
their families and for our communities.

00:29:21.460 --> 00:29:24.570
That\'s why Massey Energy
is expanding every day

00:29:24.730 --> 00:29:26.660
opening new mines every month.

00:29:27.040 --> 00:29:31.910
-It has been the single most
destructive coal mining company

00:29:32.370 --> 00:29:36.440
when it comes to Appalachian forests
in history.

00:29:38.480 --> 00:29:58.800
[MUSIC]

00:29:59.370 --> 00:30:01.510
-The most important thing
about Coal River Mountain

00:30:01.510 --> 00:30:03.770
is that the people
who live there want to stay there.

00:30:04.600 --> 00:30:06.370
They’ve been there for generations.

00:30:06.370 --> 00:30:11.510
They’re attached to that place
and it\'s either them or Massey

00:30:12.400 --> 00:30:14.860
and Massey has been winning for a long time.

00:30:15.220 --> 00:30:18.730
[MUSIC]

00:30:19.750 --> 00:30:21.130
-My name is Ed Wiley,

00:30:21.910 --> 00:30:25.000
I\'m 50-years-old. I live here
in the Coal River Valley.

00:30:26.060 --> 00:30:30.440
I work for a subcontractor
on your mountain top removal site jobs.

00:30:31.170 --> 00:30:34.240
I was on every Massey site
in the state of West Virginia.

00:30:34.730 --> 00:30:38.260
I\'ve helped build these slurry impoundments,
build the roads,

00:30:38.460 --> 00:30:43.440
move their heavy equipment anything to do
with the outside, I\'ve had my hands in.

00:30:44.730 --> 00:30:50.970
At that time, I didn\'t realize that
my granddaughter was in danger.

00:30:53.930 --> 00:30:56.420
I was told to come to the school [?] was sick.

00:30:57.510 --> 00:31:02.240
I looked over at her to check her seatbelt
and seeing that she was just discolored

00:31:02.240 --> 00:31:05.880
and her nickname is Possum.
I said, \"Possum, buddy are you okay?\"

00:31:06.400 --> 00:31:10.080
She turned and looked at me
and the tears was just pouring down

00:31:10.080 --> 00:31:12.310
that little girl\'s face. She says, \"Gramps,

00:31:12.840 --> 00:31:15.020
these coal mines are making us kids sick.\"

00:31:15.950 --> 00:31:18.680
-There\'s people who worked in the school
who got cancer, right?

00:31:19.240 --> 00:31:21.530
-Yes, we\'ve lost four teachers

00:31:21.710 --> 00:31:24.620
and I believe it’s one student
never made it to high school.

00:31:25.000 --> 00:31:26.000
Died of cancer.

00:31:26.570 --> 00:31:28.020
It’s the coal loading silo.

00:31:28.200 --> 00:31:31.280
You see the coal mining conveyor belt
going up to it.

00:31:31.910 --> 00:31:34.440
I\'ll shovel too many
a day underneath these coal belts.

00:31:34.710 --> 00:31:36.840
I know how much coal piles off of them.

00:31:37.310 --> 00:31:40.330
Everything that\'s floating
in the air here off of that silo

00:31:40.330 --> 00:31:44.550
is being sucked into that school
from its ventilation system.

00:31:45.660 --> 00:31:47.330
That’s your coal dust.

00:31:47.730 --> 00:31:49.130
That’s your dust.

00:31:49.600 --> 00:31:52.640
-That\'s what the inside of the kids lungs
are going to look like too.

00:31:55.570 --> 00:32:00.000
-The silo is part of a coal preparation
complex owned by Massey Energy.

00:32:01.860 --> 00:32:05.130
Perched behind the elementary school
is an impoundment,

00:32:05.750 --> 00:32:06.950
a man-made lake.

00:32:07.640 --> 00:32:10.660
It holds the waste
that\'s created by washing coal

00:32:10.660 --> 00:32:12.530
before it\'s shipped to power plants.

00:32:14.770 --> 00:32:18.710
-Behind this wall
we\'ve got 2.8 billion gallons of sludge.

00:32:18.950 --> 00:32:22.860
It’s got heavy metals, arsenic,
uranium. It’s radioactive.

00:32:23.110 --> 00:32:26.880
It’s basically everything
that\'s bad about coal, concentrated.

00:32:26.880 --> 00:32:32.420
It\'s coal toxin concentrate and this wall
is most likely just made out of earth,

00:32:33.350 --> 00:32:36.910
wet earth because the water
is percolating through it.

00:32:37.280 --> 00:32:40.550
It’s basically like the levees
in New Orleans that broke

00:32:41.170 --> 00:32:43.910
only there\'s 2.8 billion gallons
of sludge behind it.

00:32:48.020 --> 00:32:53.510
-This is Buffalo Creek five weeks ago
it carried with it death and destruction.

00:32:54.880 --> 00:33:00.440
-Impoundments can break
like at Buffalo Creek, West Virginia 1972.

00:33:01.640 --> 00:33:05.350
By the time the sludge settled
118 people were dead

00:33:06.440 --> 00:33:08.200
and over 4,000 left homeless.

00:33:09.420 --> 00:33:10.800
Seven were never found.

00:33:12.930 --> 00:33:16.930
In October 2000 it happened again
in Martin County, Kentucky.

00:33:18.400 --> 00:33:23.710
An impoundment owned by Massey Energy
released over 300 million gallons of sludge.

00:33:24.860 --> 00:33:29.000
The spill was 28 times the size
of the Exxon Valdez.

00:33:30.260 --> 00:33:56.970
[MUSIC]

00:33:58.510 --> 00:33:59.440
-You can\'t believe it.

00:33:59.440 --> 00:34:04.660
Is this this huge, looks the hornet\'s nest
that\'s sitting over the school

00:34:07.310 --> 00:34:12.710
and there is no doubt
that a serious leak would, if it happened,

00:34:13.060 --> 00:34:14.480
wipe those kids out.

00:34:14.950 --> 00:34:17.640
-Explosives, coal dust, chemicals,

00:34:18.200 --> 00:34:20.730
and a leaking earth and dam pointed directly

00:34:20.730 --> 00:34:24.950
at them holding back 2.8 billion gallons
of toxic sludge.

00:34:25.330 --> 00:34:27.200
This is ridiculous.

00:34:27.840 --> 00:34:29.750
-Stop poisoning our children.

00:34:30.020 --> 00:34:31.480
-Massey hear us.

00:34:31.730 --> 00:34:35.480
-I called the school board
and they can’t get much reaction out of them.

00:34:35.480 --> 00:34:38.550
I called the health department
didn\'t get much reaction out of them.

00:34:39.840 --> 00:34:41.280
Called Channel 4 News.

00:34:41.820 --> 00:34:44.330
[CHEERS]

00:34:44.550 --> 00:34:46.550
-The sludge dam is up for renewal

00:34:47.000 --> 00:34:51.240
and Massey\'s applied to build another silo
identical to that monstrosity

00:34:51.240 --> 00:34:52.600
over there right next to it.

00:34:52.950 --> 00:34:54.310
-Right now you’re trespassing.

00:34:54.550 --> 00:34:56.950
-I\'ll tell you what,
you\'re trespassing on us every day.

00:34:57.710 --> 00:35:00.930
You’re damned dust and your chemicals
is coming down to my backyard every day.

00:35:01.060 --> 00:35:01.930
-Same old agenda.

00:35:01.950 --> 00:35:03.000
Same old agenda?

00:35:03.350 --> 00:35:06.330
-If you don\'t clear all this road here
you could be arrested for trespassing.

00:35:07.880 --> 00:35:09.220
-I guess you\'re going to arrest us.

00:35:09.860 --> 00:35:16.600
[CHEERS]

00:35:18.420 --> 00:35:20.480
-May 24th, 2005

00:35:20.910 --> 00:35:23.060
was the first time anyone was arrested

00:35:23.060 --> 00:35:25.950
for protesting
Massey\'s mountaintop removal mines.

00:35:26.330 --> 00:35:29.660
[CHEERS]

00:35:30.110 --> 00:35:31.480
-Whose jobs?

00:35:31.480 --> 00:35:32.770
-Ours.

00:35:32.770 --> 00:35:33.840
-Whose mountains?

00:35:33.840 --> 00:35:34.840
-Our mountains.

00:35:34.970 --> 00:35:36.370
-Whose Jobs?

00:35:36.370 --> 00:35:37.710
-Ours.

00:35:37.710 --> 00:35:39.170
-Whose freedom?

00:35:39.170 --> 00:35:40.170
-Ours.

00:35:40.170 --> 00:35:41.620
-Who’s America?

00:35:41.860 --> 00:35:43.150
-Ours.

00:35:43.730 --> 00:35:45.260
-The head of Massey Energy,

00:35:45.510 --> 00:35:48.600
Don Blankenship paid
for this Labor Day rally.

00:35:49.020 --> 00:35:49.800
-Thank you.

00:35:50.770 --> 00:35:53.350
I want to thank everybody
for inviting me here today.

00:35:53.550 --> 00:35:55.950
It only cost me about $1 million or so.

00:35:58.860 --> 00:36:03.620
Environmental extremists
are all endangering American labor.

00:36:04.110 --> 00:36:08.710
In fact, they are making American labor
the real endangered species

00:36:08.710 --> 00:36:11.750
as they tell us that their goal
is to save the planet.

00:36:12.240 --> 00:36:15.400
[CHEERS]

00:36:15.660 --> 00:36:18.800
-Don Blankenship likes to portray himself
as a champion

00:36:18.800 --> 00:36:20.420
of the working man in West Virginia

00:36:21.570 --> 00:36:24.880
and he talks a pretty good game, but really
nothing could be further from the truth.

00:36:25.860 --> 00:36:28.080
-There’s been a relentless push
by the mining industry

00:36:28.280 --> 00:36:30.370
to replace every miner with machines.

00:36:31.200 --> 00:36:33.350
The coal industry
accuses environmentalists

00:36:33.350 --> 00:36:35.260
of taking miners jobs from them,

00:36:35.260 --> 00:36:37.750
but really it\'s the mining industry
that\'s taken those jobs.

00:36:52.080 --> 00:36:57.620
[MUSIC]

00:36:59.170 --> 00:37:01.770
-If Don Blankenship
were really concerned about

00:37:01.770 --> 00:37:04.200
West Virginia workers and communities,

00:37:04.620 --> 00:37:07.950
he wouldn\'t be turning towns
like Lindy Town into ghost towns.

00:37:10.170 --> 00:37:13.620
-The coal company\'s ultimate goal
is to depopulate these valleys

00:37:13.840 --> 00:37:15.240
and turn them into wastelands.

00:37:15.860 --> 00:37:18.150
Quite honestly they\'ve got a good start.

00:37:19.950 --> 00:37:26.000
I can recall of right off the top my head
25 communities that has been depopulated.

00:37:29.170 --> 00:37:33.170
I\'ve attended this church
when I was a child with my family.

00:37:33.930 --> 00:37:36.600
When I first look at it I noticed
that the cross

00:37:36.600 --> 00:37:38.660
and the sign has gone off the front of it

00:37:39.240 --> 00:37:43.600
and that makes it
where it\'s not a church anymore.

00:37:43.600 --> 00:37:45.400
It makes it okay to tear it down.

00:37:52.930 --> 00:37:54.770
-You know some of the people from the town?

00:37:55.400 --> 00:37:58.460
-A lot of them is gone
and then I had a good friend right up here.

00:37:58.730 --> 00:38:02.310
His name was Jaden Smith.
He’s been here for generations. His family has.

00:38:04.620 --> 00:38:09.110
He swore that he wouldn\'t sell out, but
it got to a point where they left him no choice.

00:38:09.770 --> 00:38:13.020
Conditions was going to get so bad,
they couldn\'t live here.

00:38:14.640 --> 00:38:17.600
Last time I was up here he came out
and talked to us

00:38:17.600 --> 00:38:20.400
and he was in tears
because he had to leave his home place.

00:38:24.600 --> 00:38:31.550
-We don\'t have no one in this community
except me and my oldest son lives right there.

00:38:32.200 --> 00:38:38.530
I had been here since 1946
and this had become home.

00:38:39.260 --> 00:38:40.970
I really didn\'t want to move.

00:38:41.370 --> 00:38:50.350
I decided that I would endure
the tremendous lot of dust in the area,

00:38:50.910 --> 00:38:56.730
but it\'s nothing any more than what I endured
what time I was in the coal mines,

00:38:56.730 --> 00:39:01.860
you see and it\'s like going to war,

00:39:02.060 --> 00:39:05.770
you never know when that next numbers
are coming, it’ll be you.

00:39:09.400 --> 00:39:13.730
We’re going to stay until it gets
so rough that we\'ll have to move

00:39:13.730 --> 00:39:17.620
or either that big rock
in front of the mountain comes down

00:39:17.620 --> 00:39:18.950
and smashes us all out.

00:39:19.750 --> 00:39:21.400
-Good to meet you and good luck.

00:39:22.020 --> 00:39:25.600
-I never thought I\'d ever have a Kennedy
in my home.

00:39:26.020 --> 00:39:27.660
-It\'s a pleasure to meet you.

00:39:28.150 --> 00:39:31.840
-Never, never falter whenever
that would come true.

00:39:39.080 --> 00:39:42.840
-When my father was fighting strip mining
in Appalachia back in the ‘60s,

00:39:43.440 --> 00:39:47.260
I remember a conversation that I had with him
when I was 14-years-old

00:39:47.620 --> 00:39:51.170
where he said to me.
“They\'re not just destroying the environment,

00:39:51.170 --> 00:39:53.710
but they\'re permanently impoverishing
these communities

00:39:54.200 --> 00:39:57.220
because there\'s no way
they can regenerate an economy

00:39:57.220 --> 00:39:59.710
from these barren moonscapes
that are left behind.”

00:40:01.130 --> 00:40:05.420
[MUSIC]

00:40:06.420 --> 00:40:09.910
He said,
\"They\'re doing it so they can break the unions,\"

00:40:10.330 --> 00:40:11.860
and that\'s exactly what happened.

00:40:18.970 --> 00:40:21.600
When Don Blankenship
and as he called promised

00:40:21.600 --> 00:40:24.480
that there are strip mining
it\'s going to bring prosperity to the state.

00:40:24.750 --> 00:40:25.770
This is what they mean.

00:40:26.550 --> 00:40:27.710
This is a union hall.

00:40:30.420 --> 00:40:33.280
-When Don Blankenship began his career
in the early ‘80s

00:40:33.680 --> 00:40:36.310
virtually every mine was unionized.

00:40:37.260 --> 00:40:41.800
Now, virtually none are and Don more
than anyone else made that happen.

00:40:42.280 --> 00:40:46.710
[MUSIC]

00:40:49.020 --> 00:40:54.930
-In 1984 Massey set about systematically
breaking the United Mine Workers of America,

00:40:55.800 --> 00:40:59.680
closing down mines and reopening them
with non-union labor.

00:41:01.710 --> 00:41:07.170
[MUSIC]

00:41:08.770 --> 00:41:11.880
At that time, Don Blankenship
was a plant manager.

00:41:12.370 --> 00:41:16.660
-I always make the comparison it’s like a jungle
or a jungle for survival of the fittest.

00:41:16.860 --> 00:41:20.020
Non-union competitors
have a tremendous advantage

00:41:20.020 --> 00:41:23.600
and therefore they sell coal cheaper
and driving union coals out of business.

00:41:24.130 --> 00:41:26.330
[TRAIN HORNS]

00:41:26.820 --> 00:41:28.820
-Workers today are paid less.

00:41:29.000 --> 00:41:34.660
They have far fewer benefits and they
can be fired as easily as Don himself said

00:41:35.110 --> 00:41:39.260
as a tool that\'s broke
and as he reportedly said,

00:41:39.370 --> 00:41:42.910
\"If a tool\'s broke, just go out, get another one.\"

00:41:45.440 --> 00:41:48.950
-When I started work for Massey,
I was an ex-union guy.

00:41:50.910 --> 00:41:55.040
It was like walking
from daylight into darkness

00:41:55.370 --> 00:41:58.420
that\'s the difference
in working for a un-unionized

00:41:58.420 --> 00:42:00.110
and working for Massey operation.

00:42:03.620 --> 00:42:05.280
We [?] to quit now.

00:42:07.200 --> 00:42:09.860
We had to load so much footage the day
before we got home.

00:42:12.420 --> 00:42:14.680
You stayed in there until you got your 450.

00:42:15.150 --> 00:42:20.400
That’s what we had to get
and sometimes it would take 14-16 hours.

00:42:23.420 --> 00:42:28.930
-After 30 years as a coal miner,
Chuck Nelson salary was $15 an hour.

00:42:30.080 --> 00:42:33.660
Meanwhile, Don Blankenship salary
was skyrocketing.

00:42:34.200 --> 00:42:39.400
-Don got up to something like $33 million
in annual income, perks, and benefits.

00:42:39.620 --> 00:42:42.460
That’s not Darwinian. That’s just predatory.

00:42:43.480 --> 00:42:47.060
The same is true in the way he deals
with safety issues.

00:42:50.660 --> 00:42:54.280
-25 people now confirmed dead
after last night\'s explosion

00:42:54.280 --> 00:42:58.480
or yesterday afternoon’s
at the Upper Big Branch Mine in Montcoal.

00:42:59.930 --> 00:43:03.310
-The miners died in what
appeared to be a methane gas explosion

00:43:03.310 --> 00:43:04.710
1,000 feet underground.

00:43:05.480 --> 00:43:08.150
-He was a family man and he loved the Lord.

00:43:08.150 --> 00:43:11.080
We know where he\'s at, but we still want him back.

00:43:11.600 --> 00:43:13.910
-Monday\'s deadly explosion
has turned the spotlight

00:43:13.910 --> 00:43:17.040
on the questionable safety record
of the mine\'s owner Massey Energy.

00:43:17.040 --> 00:43:21.000
-The Upper Big Branch Mine
has a history of serious violations.

00:43:21.220 --> 00:43:24.950
-The Upper Big Branch Mine was cited
for 500 safety violations

00:43:24.950 --> 00:43:30.620
in 2009 and so far has paid $168,000 in fines.

00:43:30.950 --> 00:43:34.060
That’s less than Massey Energy earns
in an hour.

00:43:34.480 --> 00:43:38.820
-Profit over human life is what I think.
All they care about is that money.

00:43:40.420 --> 00:43:44.640
-It’s one thing to play tough
in the marketplace and it\'s another thing

00:43:44.640 --> 00:43:48.310
to violate safety
and environmental standards

00:43:48.600 --> 00:43:52.370
and run-up violations again
and again just because

00:43:53.330 --> 00:43:55.240
it\'s easier to make more money that way.

00:44:20.040 --> 00:44:22.730
-We\'re sitting here in Rock Creek,
West Virginia.

00:44:27.110 --> 00:44:31.510
Actually, we\'re sitting in the backyard
of Climate Ground Zero’s headquarters

00:44:31.710 --> 00:44:34.930
and I\'m the embedded journalist
with Climate Ground Zero.

00:44:37.550 --> 00:44:41.240
-People have come from all over the country
to join Climate Ground Zero

00:44:41.550 --> 00:44:44.400
in the battle to stop the mining
of Coal River Mountain.

00:44:58.930 --> 00:44:59.880
-It breaks the heart.

00:45:00.480 --> 00:45:01.970
What they’re doing to these mountains.

00:45:02.800 --> 00:45:03.770
-This is a crime.

00:45:03.950 --> 00:45:07.170
It’s a crime against America.
It’s crime against Appalachia.

00:45:07.620 --> 00:45:08.710
We\'re here to stop it.

00:45:09.350 --> 00:45:11.330
If only for one day only we’re going to stop it.

00:45:11.750 --> 00:45:14.040
-Came all the way here from DC

00:45:14.800 --> 00:45:18.880
and we get our power from this coal right here.

00:45:20.860 --> 00:45:24.420
We’re going to stop that
because I believe in clean energy.

00:45:29.840 --> 00:45:32.240
-It takes people outside the coalfields
to come in

00:45:32.240 --> 00:45:37.460
and stop this insanity
because the only job ever has been coal job

00:45:37.820 --> 00:45:43.170
and you do what the coal man says
or you don\'t have a job.

00:45:44.060 --> 00:45:46.800
Outsiders have to come in to stop this.

00:45:48.110 --> 00:45:49.860
-One year ago, Climate Ground Zero,

00:45:50.000 --> 00:45:53.220
helped begin what is now
a sustained campaign

00:45:53.220 --> 00:45:54.930
of non-violent civil disobedience.

00:45:55.020 --> 00:46:00.620
I think there have been two actions
per every month since February 2009.

00:46:04.820 --> 00:46:07.570
Approximately 140 people
have been arrested.

00:46:09.440 --> 00:46:10.420
-Where are you from?

00:46:10.730 --> 00:46:11.600
-Nashville.

00:46:14.800 --> 00:46:15.970
-People be respectful.

00:46:16.600 --> 00:46:18.040
-Get that camera out of here.

00:46:18.040 --> 00:46:19.530
-Sorry man, turn it off, turn it off.

00:46:20.970 --> 00:46:22.330
-It\'s a non-violent protest.

00:46:22.750 --> 00:46:24.260
-We\'re not going to harm the machines.

00:46:43.420 --> 00:46:51.660
[MUSIC]

00:46:55.710 --> 00:46:59.110
-Civil disobedience
has very clear parameters

00:46:59.910 --> 00:47:03.130
that you break the law, that you do it openly,

00:47:04.310 --> 00:47:08.110
and that you accept the consequences of it
and that you do it peacefully.

00:47:12.150 --> 00:47:14.240
-Bobby Kennedy has had a long career

00:47:14.240 --> 00:47:17.510
successfully suing companies
to stop them from polluting,

00:47:20.510 --> 00:47:23.970
but in 2001 when he tried to stop
environmental destruction

00:47:23.970 --> 00:47:27.600
on the Puerto Rican island of Vieques
he hit a roadblock.

00:47:30.060 --> 00:47:33.130
The US Navy was using the island
for bombing practice

00:47:34.020 --> 00:47:36.150
with the support of local authorities.

00:47:38.440 --> 00:47:44.530
-I thought I\'ve arrived at a place here
where democracy has been so trampled upon.

00:47:45.110 --> 00:47:48.420
That the law even though it\'s designed
to protect these citizens

00:47:48.420 --> 00:47:53.350
has no effect and I made a personal decision

00:47:54.170 --> 00:47:58.710
at this point I had a duty to do something
beyond the law.

00:48:02.150 --> 00:48:04.750
-He spent 30 days in a maximum-security prison.

00:48:08.200 --> 00:48:11.880
The campaign was eventually successful
and the bombing was halted.

00:48:19.060 --> 00:48:23.730
-Those times when we were arrested
it was always peaceful and friendly

00:48:23.730 --> 00:48:27.910
and civil from our side
and that non-violence is our protection.

00:48:28.860 --> 00:48:31.600
-My name is Laura Von Dohlen
and I\'m from Richmond, Virginia.

00:48:32.080 --> 00:48:36.310
I’m going to court because in November, myself
and three other people took over a drill rig.

00:48:37.040 --> 00:48:39.660
-We locked ourselves to the drill rig
on Coal River Mountain.

00:48:39.660 --> 00:48:41.570
There are four of us that were arrested.

00:48:42.680 --> 00:48:46.130
-We listen to the cops tell us
how we\'re throwing our life away

00:48:46.130 --> 00:48:51.220
and the usual for anyone
who\'s going to get arrested doing

00:48:51.220 --> 00:48:52.820
non-violent civil disobedience.

00:48:53.860 --> 00:48:54.840
-That’s how I see it.

00:48:54.840 --> 00:48:57.910
It’s committing a smaller crime in order
to stop the crime against humanity

00:48:57.910 --> 00:49:00.910
which is poisoning people\'s water
and destroying our ecosystem

00:49:00.910 --> 00:49:03.710
and just destroying the future
of many people\'s lives.

00:49:23.840 --> 00:49:29.510
[MUSIC]

00:49:32.800 --> 00:49:37.000
-The mother of all environmental problems
is the climate change issue.

00:49:38.020 --> 00:49:44.080
It’s very real. It\'s happening today
and at the core of the problem is coal.

00:49:47.660 --> 00:49:50.460
-Don, you\'ve said flat out
that global warming is a hoax.

00:49:51.040 --> 00:49:53.370
Are you being socially irresponsible

00:49:53.680 --> 00:49:56.600
by denying the science
behind global warming

00:49:56.600 --> 00:49:58.620
to benefit your company\'s bottom line?

00:49:59.370 --> 00:50:04.020
-Absolutely not. I really believe
that the climate is changing naturally

00:50:04.020 --> 00:50:07.150
and that the temperature
for the last eight or nine years

00:50:07.150 --> 00:50:10.800
has been cooling
and that the Arctic ice has been increasing

00:50:10.800 --> 00:50:12.110
and that there\'s a great deal

00:50:12.110 --> 00:50:14.260
of misunderstanding out there
about climate change.

00:50:14.440 --> 00:50:18.640
-The world\'s top climate scientists
say they are 90% certain human activities,

00:50:18.640 --> 00:50:20.930
pumping greenhouse gases
into the atmosphere

00:50:20.930 --> 00:50:22.820
are the cause of global warming.

00:50:22.950 --> 00:50:27.240
-It is an unequivocal set of pieces
of evidence

00:50:27.240 --> 00:50:32.060
that I can put before the world about
how fossil fuel use and land use change

00:50:32.660 --> 00:50:36.710
are fundamentally affecting the systems
on our planet.

00:50:43.860 --> 00:50:48.080
-The epicenter of the climate
change battle in the United States

00:50:48.570 --> 00:50:50.130
is Appalachian coal.

00:50:51.110 --> 00:50:57.110
The epicenter of the battle around
Appalachian coal is Coal River Mountain.

00:51:04.060 --> 00:51:07.480
-11 year old Kayla Taylor
is delivering pennies to the governor.

00:51:07.910 --> 00:51:10.400
She\'s helping to launch pennies of promise.

00:51:10.510 --> 00:51:15.660
It\'s a fundraising campaign for a new school
for MarshFork Elementary students.

00:51:16.060 --> 00:51:18.930
-We\'d like to see the governor,
we have some money to present him.

00:51:21.220 --> 00:51:23.330
-Some people are here from the MarshFork area.

00:51:23.730 --> 00:51:26.620
They want to see the governor
or someone in the governor\'s office.

00:51:33.260 --> 00:51:34.240
-I\'m so sorry.

00:51:36.910 --> 00:51:38.640
-I understand [?] kids everywhere.

00:51:38.660 --> 00:51:39.570
How are you all doing?

00:51:39.930 --> 00:51:40.910
Good to see you.

00:51:41.350 --> 00:51:45.570
-We have a young lady here from
MarshFork Elementary presenting something.

00:51:46.110 --> 00:51:47.200
-What\'s your name?

00:51:47.200 --> 00:51:47.880
-Kayla.

00:51:47.880 --> 00:51:48.570
-Kayla?

00:51:48.930 --> 00:51:52.510
How you doing in school? Good grades?
Studying hard?

00:51:52.660 --> 00:51:56.660
-Kayla has a little gift here for you.
This was our campaign.

00:51:57.930 --> 00:52:02.710
-Okay. Now let me just--
because I know we worked on this some.

00:52:02.710 --> 00:52:05.110
We talked about it before
and talked about the school, right?

00:52:05.110 --> 00:52:05.550
-Yes, sir.

00:52:05.550 --> 00:52:08.200
-I know the school. Where are we at
with the local board of education?

00:52:08.200 --> 00:52:11.620
-Let\'s just start all over, sir.
Let\'s back up a whole lot.

00:52:12.110 --> 00:52:13.570
We\'re not going to get them involved.

00:52:13.570 --> 00:52:16.530
You took a [?] protect away from West Virginia

00:52:17.530 --> 00:52:22.080
We\'re not going to do what we\'ve been doing.

00:52:22.350 --> 00:52:24.600
You put a price on our children\'s head.

00:52:25.310 --> 00:52:29.200
When you started this like vocation
in our state, you put a price.

00:52:29.200 --> 00:52:32.330
This is not an environmental issue,
this is a little human being.

00:52:32.710 --> 00:52:35.840
I have tried for two years to work with you
on this and I\'ve been Ignored.

00:52:36.550 --> 00:52:40.170
Now I don\'t mean to put you on the spot here,
sir, but enough is enough.

00:52:40.170 --> 00:52:41.860
We need to get this took care of.

00:52:41.860 --> 00:52:44.310
-I\'ll do everything in my power that I can.

00:52:44.310 --> 00:52:45.460
-What does that mean, governor?

00:52:45.460 --> 00:52:47.040
-That means I\'ll do everything in my power.

00:52:47.040 --> 00:52:48.220
-Guys, with that we got [?].

00:52:51.550 --> 00:52:55.080
-The current Governor of West Virginia
is a man of coal.

00:52:55.280 --> 00:52:57.840
He\'s a friend of coal.
I think he\'s called himself a friend of coal.

00:52:58.020 --> 00:53:00.110
-Thank you. I\'m Joe Manchin.
I\'m a friend of coal.

00:53:01.280 --> 00:53:03.110
[APPLAUSE]

00:53:03.770 --> 00:53:06.880
-I guess what it means is that he\'s bought
and paid for by the coal industry.

00:53:07.000 --> 00:53:09.510
-I\'ll like to find a person
who\'s not a friend of coal.

00:53:10.200 --> 00:53:13.150
If they\'re not, they should be
because coal does keep

00:53:13.150 --> 00:53:15.440
the lights on and we can burn it cleaner,

00:53:15.730 --> 00:53:18.000
we can burn it more environmentally
friendly,

00:53:22.200 --> 00:53:25.840
-Operations do not want democracy,
they want profits.

00:53:26.260 --> 00:53:31.150
The best way for them to get profits too often
is to use our campaign finance system,

00:53:31.150 --> 00:53:35.460
which is just a system of legalized bribery
to get their hooks into a public official,

00:53:35.910 --> 00:53:39.170
then use that public official
to dismantle the marketplace.

00:53:40.970 --> 00:53:43.530
[APPLAUSE]

00:53:44.400 --> 00:53:50.240
-We\'ve known for a long time that corporations
were the most important economic actors,

00:53:50.640 --> 00:53:54.860
but what we have seen so plainly
during this period of environmentalism

00:53:55.110 --> 00:53:59.680
is that corporations are also
the most important political actors

00:54:00.000 --> 00:54:05.970
and are really the force
that governs our country now I\'m afraid.

00:54:08.860 --> 00:54:12.640
-The West Virginia department
of environmental protection or DEP

00:54:13.200 --> 00:54:16.280
is the agency charged
with enforcing the clean water act.

00:54:20.820 --> 00:54:25.200
-The DEP is not only failing in its duty
to enforce the environmental laws,

00:54:25.200 --> 00:54:27.130
it\'s actually gone over to the other side

00:54:27.130 --> 00:54:32.080
and consciously helps the coal industry
evade compliance.

00:54:33.080 --> 00:54:37.330
-The person who determines the behavior
of the regulatory agencies in the state

00:54:37.640 --> 00:54:40.280
is the democratic governor, Joe Manchin.

00:54:41.060 --> 00:54:44.060
-If we could permeate the retail mentality

00:54:44.350 --> 00:54:47.080
in every government worker
in the state of West Virginia

00:54:47.600 --> 00:54:49.800
and then when inspectors come out,
they\'re going to say,

00:54:49.800 --> 00:54:51.330
hey John, you got a problem here.

00:54:51.640 --> 00:54:54.680
Before I write you up with a violation,
here\'s what I think ought to do to fix it.

00:54:54.680 --> 00:54:56.550
Let\'s get together
and get our people together.

00:54:56.550 --> 00:55:00.420
I\'ll come back in a week or a month
or whenever the rotation time would be.

00:55:01.080 --> 00:55:05.220
Then if you\'ve made those changes
and try to make the changes,

00:55:05.220 --> 00:55:06.730
we\'re working in the right direction.

00:55:07.000 --> 00:55:09.440
-As long as the governor is giving the orders,

00:55:09.440 --> 00:55:11.310
the department
of environmental protection

00:55:11.310 --> 00:55:13.400
is not going to enforce
against the coal industry.

00:55:14.060 --> 00:55:17.110
There are hundreds of thousands
of violations of those permits

00:55:17.110 --> 00:55:19.200
by coal companies in this region every year

00:55:19.200 --> 00:55:22.280
and the state DEPs do nothing about them

00:55:22.570 --> 00:55:25.440
or slap the companies on a wrist
and actually protect them.

00:55:25.800 --> 00:55:27.350
-Anybody home? Hello.

00:55:27.350 --> 00:55:31.260
-DEP. Does anybody enforce the law here?

00:55:33.060 --> 00:55:33.860
Hello.

00:55:53.800 --> 00:55:55.620
-In July, 2007,

00:55:56.170 --> 00:55:59.570
Bobby Kennedy takes his case directly
to the coal industry.

00:56:00.510 --> 00:56:01.930
-Bobby Kennedy, how are you?

00:56:01.930 --> 00:56:03.110
-Nice to meet you.

00:56:03.220 --> 00:56:04.350
-Welcome Charleston.

00:56:07.680 --> 00:56:09.480
Did you ever get a chance to read my book?

00:56:09.770 --> 00:56:10.130
-No.

00:56:10.130 --> 00:56:11.280
-[?].

00:56:11.280 --> 00:56:13.000
-No. Should I?

00:56:13.510 --> 00:56:15.620
-Yes. Well, I think you\'re mentioned in there.

00:56:17.110 --> 00:56:18.770
-In a good way or a bad way?

00:56:22.220 --> 00:56:24.800
-I\'m critical of your position.

00:56:24.800 --> 00:56:26.530
-Well, I want you to tell me why.

00:56:26.750 --> 00:56:30.510
-How can Massey Coal have 60,000 violations,

00:56:31.170 --> 00:56:34.820
60,000 violations, and nobody
in the state came and stopped them?

00:56:34.820 --> 00:56:37.930
What if somebody robbed a bank 60,000 times?

00:56:38.440 --> 00:56:40.840
Every time they do that,
they\'re breaking the law.

00:56:41.060 --> 00:56:43.150
It\'s supposed to be a $31,000 penalty,

00:56:43.530 --> 00:56:47.480
but they\'ve never paid a single penalty
for violating the clean water act.

00:56:47.910 --> 00:56:51.330
How can you do--
What\'s the difference between robbing a bank

00:56:51.840 --> 00:56:53.400
and polluting a local waterway?

00:56:53.550 --> 00:56:57.170
It\'s worse than robbing a bank
because a kid could eat that fish

00:56:57.640 --> 00:56:59.570
and get sick and get cancer [?].

00:56:59.570 --> 00:57:02.880
-You got to slow down here just a little bit.
Give me a chance to respond.

00:57:04.620 --> 00:57:09.570
You guys from up North talk fast
and with all the adjectives and all the verbs,

00:57:09.570 --> 00:57:12.620
all the things that you\'ve used and contrived

00:57:12.620 --> 00:57:16.510
and written your book
and pretty opinionated.

00:57:17.710 --> 00:57:20.240
I\'ve got people that depend on mining coal.

00:57:20.240 --> 00:57:22.200
Now they\'re making your electricity for you.

00:57:23.620 --> 00:57:27.240
Are your people up there
that you live close to going to decide

00:57:27.240 --> 00:57:29.750
that they don\'t want to have their lights on
a half of each day?

00:57:30.330 --> 00:57:34.820
You can put all the economics aside
and the true worth of our industry

00:57:34.820 --> 00:57:36.800
is the fact that it\'s full of professionals

00:57:37.240 --> 00:57:40.860
and they\'re struggling and
attempting every day to do their job better

00:57:40.860 --> 00:57:43.110
than they did it yesterday.
That\'s the worth of it.

00:57:43.110 --> 00:57:46.460
I\'ve got 20,000 people that depend on
a mine working every day.

00:57:46.460 --> 00:57:49.200
I\'ve got another 25,000. I don\'t have them.

00:57:49.200 --> 00:57:51.600
They\'re out here in West Virginia
in 26 counties

00:57:52.370 --> 00:57:55.730
and they\'re doing their absolute best
to protect the environment.

00:57:56.130 --> 00:57:57.370
They grew up on the mountains.

00:57:57.680 --> 00:58:00.800
They grew up fishing at streams
where they\'re today mining

00:58:01.150 --> 00:58:02.530
and they want to preserve that.

00:58:02.530 --> 00:58:04.880
They want their children
and grandchildren to do that.

00:58:05.130 --> 00:58:06.880
They\'re confident they\'re doing it.

00:58:07.110 --> 00:58:11.080
-Listen, Bill, if you flew over that with me

00:58:11.080 --> 00:58:14.640
and you look me in the eye
and say we left it the way we found it,

00:58:15.910 --> 00:58:17.020
I cannot believe you.

00:58:17.020 --> 00:58:19.880
-According to the plan
that was filed and approved.

00:58:21.400 --> 00:58:24.910
-See, that\'s the whole thing
with your rationale is you say,

00:58:24.910 --> 00:58:28.910
\"Well, we did it according to the plan,\"
but any three year old--

00:58:28.910 --> 00:58:33.600
I could take this little boy up in
that airplane and look at those landscapes

00:58:33.600 --> 00:58:36.550
and I\'d say to him,
\"Is that the way it\'s supposed to look?\"

00:58:37.040 --> 00:58:41.260
He would say, \"Heck no.\" It is a moonscape up there.

00:58:41.420 --> 00:58:46.260
-I want you to answer the question,
how does it affect my men and women in Boone

00:58:46.260 --> 00:58:49.640
and [?] Galea in Logan County, West Virginia?

00:58:50.000 --> 00:58:52.570
Is it going to take their job?
If it is, you\'re on the wrong track.

00:58:52.880 --> 00:58:55.800
-If this is so good for the economy
of West Virginia,

00:58:56.040 --> 00:58:58.260
why is this one of the poorest States
in the nation?

00:58:58.510 --> 00:59:01.860
The people that stay have lost their jobs,
not because of environmentalist,

00:59:01.860 --> 00:59:03.820
they\'ve lost their jobs
because of the industry.

00:59:04.060 --> 00:59:06.350
Because the industry
decided to change its model

00:59:06.570 --> 00:59:09.620
and [?] strip mining
and a huge capital expenditures

00:59:09.620 --> 00:59:11.350
to get away from paying labor.

00:59:11.860 --> 00:59:13.460
Now the money that they\'re making,

00:59:13.460 --> 00:59:15.860
they\'re getting the same amount
of coal out of West Virginia

00:59:15.860 --> 00:59:18.730
with a lot more imposition of costs
on the people in that state,

00:59:19.060 --> 00:59:21.310
but the money is going up to Wall Street.

00:59:21.600 --> 00:59:26.820
-Don\'t preach about it. Be like my guys,
go build ponds and fix control drainage.

00:59:28.420 --> 00:59:30.710
Don\'t be a screamer out in the hallway.

00:59:31.680 --> 00:59:35.440
Go take care of it. That\'s what the people
that work in my industry are doing.

00:59:35.440 --> 00:59:38.530
They\'re practicing environmentalist.
They really are.

00:59:46.730 --> 00:59:50.420
-After years
of the West Virginia DEPs unwillingness

00:59:50.420 --> 00:59:55.880
to fully enforce clean water laws,
the federal EPA finally steps in.

00:59:57.110 --> 01:00:02.440
-In 2007, the EPA on a federal level
went after Massey

01:00:02.750 --> 01:00:09.000
and declared that it was guilty of systemic
violations of environmental standards.

01:00:10.950 --> 01:00:16.770
-Massey is allowed to settle
at 60,000 violations for only $20 million.

01:00:17.570 --> 01:00:20.310
Less than 1% of what the regulations call for.

01:00:24.130 --> 01:00:26.550
-Yet, in the months directly after that,

01:00:26.930 --> 01:00:32.800
Massey went on and ran up
another 8,500 violations. It’s breathtaking.

01:00:38.480 --> 01:00:42.640
-Meanwhile, Massey\'s mining operations
are getting dangerously close

01:00:42.640 --> 01:00:46.000
to the impoundment above
the MarshFork Elementary School.

01:00:51.800 --> 01:01:06.510
[CHANTING]

01:01:07.310 --> 01:01:14.950
-We want results today. We want our kids
in a safe new school, simple as that.

01:01:15.950 --> 01:01:18.130
Why is our kids any different?

01:01:20.770 --> 01:01:22.620
Because they’re in the coal fields?

01:01:23.640 --> 01:01:25.420
They’re on the wrong side of the mountain?

01:01:26.710 --> 01:01:36.510
[CHANTING]

01:01:37.150 --> 01:01:40.240
-Make no mistake,
if we have to take people in custody,

01:01:40.240 --> 01:01:42.060
we’re certainly prepared to do that.

01:01:44.770 --> 01:01:56.000
[JEERS]

01:01:58.930 --> 01:02:01.460
-Non-violence [?], it does work.

01:02:03.730 --> 01:02:10.550
It\'s a beautiful thing to be strong enough
to not get violent, not get angry.

01:02:14.530 --> 01:02:16.150
-She’s 91-years-old.

01:02:18.150 --> 01:02:22.150
-If people who are able to maintain
the discipline of doing that,

01:02:23.350 --> 01:02:27.530
grandmother who her wheelchair
is hauled out of the governor\'s office--

01:02:29.840 --> 01:02:32.420
These people who come
from all over the country

01:02:32.420 --> 01:02:34.770
to save the Appalachian Mountains,

01:02:35.440 --> 01:02:38.840
to me, they are heroes of American democracy.

01:02:42.280 --> 01:02:43.330
-Shame on you.

01:02:43.880 --> 01:02:45.710
You’ve got police [?].

01:02:59.750 --> 01:03:03.970
-Coal from the Coal River Valley is shipped
to power plants all over the country

01:03:04.860 --> 01:03:06.620
and most of it goes by train.

01:03:09.550 --> 01:03:12.950
Coal transportation is a massive business
for the railroad industry

01:03:13.460 --> 01:03:17.310
representing almost half of the major
freight carried in the United States.

01:03:20.260 --> 01:03:21.970
To protect this lucrative trade,

01:03:22.480 --> 01:03:25.600
the railroads make
considerable political investments.

01:03:27.800 --> 01:03:35.730
[MUSIC]

01:03:36.200 --> 01:03:40.060
The money spent by coal burning utilities
is greater still.

01:03:47.480 --> 01:03:50.710
-It\'s always been pay to play in Congress.

01:03:51.600 --> 01:03:55.710
In the case of coal, the corruption
has been particularly gross.

01:03:56.820 --> 01:04:01.510
The money substantial
and the political influence has followed.

01:04:02.970 --> 01:04:08.570
The government provides billions
of dollars in subsidies every year

01:04:08.570 --> 01:04:11.220
to the coal industry in the United States.

01:04:18.130 --> 01:04:22.770
The coal industry imposes billions
of dollars of health effects

01:04:23.550 --> 01:04:28.480
on citizens in literally every single state
in this country.

01:04:31.220 --> 01:04:34.680
-Well, what you have here is a modern power
generating facility.

01:04:35.220 --> 01:04:37.130
It\'s owned by American Electric Power.

01:04:37.130 --> 01:04:40.110
It’s located about 25 miles out of Charleston,
West Virginia.

01:04:40.640 --> 01:04:43.080
You’ve got the coal, you\'ve got the plant,

01:04:43.530 --> 01:04:49.370
you\'ve got the electricity grid beginning
and you\'ve got the ash that comes from the coal.

01:04:50.040 --> 01:04:52.350
You have
the entire industrial facility here

01:04:52.350 --> 01:04:54.860
that is converting coal
to modern electricity.

01:04:55.730 --> 01:05:00.280
You can see how clean it is. You can see at
the stack that there is no evident emission.

01:05:00.880 --> 01:05:05.200
We’re a very modern power plant
and this is what it\'s all about.

01:05:05.200 --> 01:05:09.000
This is about converting coal
to value-added electricity

01:05:09.000 --> 01:05:11.060
that goes into everyone\'s homes
and businesses.

01:05:13.150 --> 01:05:16.860
-Actually, the Kanawha River Power Plant
is far from modern.

01:05:17.420 --> 01:05:19.280
It was built in 1953.

01:05:20.200 --> 01:05:23.600
37 years before the Clean Air Act
regulated emissions.

01:05:25.280 --> 01:05:30.310
-The coal industry
continues to operate old dirty plants

01:05:31.440 --> 01:05:33.510
that should have been terminated,

01:05:33.880 --> 01:05:37.680
but they keep them going
because the regulations on the old plants

01:05:38.150 --> 01:05:41.800
are less demanding than they are
for the new plants.

01:05:43.280 --> 01:05:47.060
-This power plant has never been retrofitted
with pollution controls.

01:05:48.440 --> 01:05:49.800
In 2008 alone,

01:05:50.150 --> 01:05:55.660
the plant released over 40 million pounds of
pollutants including toxins like mercury,

01:05:56.170 --> 01:05:58.080
arsenic and lead.

01:06:02.130 --> 01:06:04.260
-I have three sons who have asthma.

01:06:04.620 --> 01:06:08.420
We know that asthma
attacks are caused by bad air,

01:06:08.420 --> 01:06:12.240
by ozone and particulates
and the principal source of those materials

01:06:12.240 --> 01:06:16.200
in our atmosphere are hundreds
of coal burning power plants

01:06:16.200 --> 01:06:17.530
that are burning coal illegally.

01:06:18.020 --> 01:06:19.750
It’s been illegal for 18 years.

01:06:19.750 --> 01:06:22.930
Under the Clean Air Act, they were supposed
to remove those materials

01:06:22.930 --> 01:06:25.080
from their emissions 18 years ago.

01:06:25.840 --> 01:06:31.800
In states where corporations can easily
dominate the state political landscapes,

01:06:32.150 --> 01:06:34.460
they were not required to comply with the law.

01:06:34.460 --> 01:06:39.110
There\'s hundreds of them
that are violating this critical law,

01:06:40.310 --> 01:06:44.150
but this is an industry that donated
enormous amounts to President Bush

01:06:44.170 --> 01:06:46.000
during the 2000 cycle.

01:06:47.110 --> 01:06:49.710
One of the first things
that the Bush administration did

01:06:49.710 --> 01:06:53.970
when he came into office
was to abolish the new source rule.

01:06:56.260 --> 01:06:59.800
This was the most important rule
in the entire Clean Air Act.

01:06:59.800 --> 01:07:04.400
It is the heart and soul of that statute
and that\'s the rule that required

01:07:04.840 --> 01:07:09.570
those coal burning power plants to clean up
their emissions 18 years ago.

01:07:12.860 --> 01:07:16.460
Now, I\'m going to be able to watch
my children gasping for air

01:07:16.460 --> 01:07:20.370
on bad air days
because somebody gave money to a politician.

01:07:22.060 --> 01:07:28.280
[MUSIC]

01:07:28.910 --> 01:07:31.330
-Even relatively new plants have problems.

01:07:36.350 --> 01:07:42.240
Shipping Port, Pennsylvania is home to the
Bruce Mansfield Power Plant built in 1976.

01:07:47.570 --> 01:07:48.750
-I’m Ron Burris.

01:07:49.680 --> 01:07:51.150
I\'m 61 years old.

01:07:52.930 --> 01:07:57.860
I live in Shipping Port and
the Bruce Mansfield Power Plant is behind me.

01:08:00.620 --> 01:08:02.860
My family moved here in 1951.

01:08:04.110 --> 01:08:07.550
I was a riverboat pilot, towed coal mostly.

01:08:08.620 --> 01:08:11.510
I used to tow coal
to the Bruce Mansfield Plant.

01:08:15.800 --> 01:08:21.240
I have a 2001 Monte Carlo
and I had it painted after a year

01:08:21.710 --> 01:08:23.820
which Bruce Mansfield paid for

01:08:25.260 --> 01:08:30.910
and I had it painted two years ago,
which Bruce Mansfield also paid for that.

01:08:32.770 --> 01:08:36.510
There would be pollution on it,
comes from the power plant

01:08:37.910 --> 01:08:41.460
that would burn through the paint down
to the metal.

01:08:47.080 --> 01:08:50.820
-It\'s not necessarily the soot
that you can see that\'s the problem.

01:08:52.150 --> 01:08:58.040
The big pieces of dust are too big
to get inhaled.

01:08:59.170 --> 01:09:02.310
The real problem is the tiny things
you can\'t see.

01:09:05.800 --> 01:09:09.620
Fine particles can contain heavy metals
that are very, very toxic.

01:09:10.000 --> 01:09:12.510
They can contain particles
that are radioactive.

01:09:12.840 --> 01:09:16.750
They can contain heavy metals
like arsenic and mercury.

01:09:19.640 --> 01:09:22.000
Metals and the brain don\'t mix very well.

01:09:22.750 --> 01:09:28.080
They actually have profound effects on the
development of intelligence in children.

01:09:28.400 --> 01:09:29.660
They affect behavior.

01:09:30.020 --> 01:09:32.420
They affect the ability of people
to have healthy children.

01:09:32.840 --> 01:09:35.330
-I spy something brown and yellow.

01:09:35.330 --> 01:09:38.510
-Brown and yellow, let me think,
could it be a signboard?

01:09:39.420 --> 01:09:39.770
-Yes.

01:09:40.080 --> 01:09:41.080
-Hey.

01:09:41.800 --> 01:09:45.060
My youngest son, James. He has autism.

01:09:46.730 --> 01:09:50.510
The numbers of autistic children
in this local area--

01:09:50.510 --> 01:09:55.710
my son, the class he\'s in, we have
a local elementary school right in this area,

01:09:56.020 --> 01:09:58.330
class he’s in there\'s eight.

01:10:06.080 --> 01:10:08.530
-I\'ve had some serious health problems.

01:10:08.530 --> 01:10:13.640
I had cancer in 2004 and I also have cancer now.

01:10:15.310 --> 01:10:38.060
[MUSIC]

01:10:39.730 --> 01:10:43.770
-Shortly after he was interviewed,
Ron Burris died of cancer.

01:10:45.750 --> 01:10:47.420
He was 63-years-old.

01:10:50.460 --> 01:10:53.820
Researchers are now embarking on
a 10-year study

01:10:53.820 --> 01:10:57.530
of the relationship between autism
and airborne pollutants.

01:10:59.710 --> 01:11:02.910
-As a parent, you sit there and wonder,
did I do this?

01:11:04.080 --> 01:11:06.370
Did I cause some of this?

01:11:06.370 --> 01:11:12.330
If I lived somewhere else,
would he have been healthier?

01:11:25.970 --> 01:11:29.880
-There are 600 coal-fired power plants
across the United States

01:11:32.040 --> 01:11:34.620
and their emissions
cover the entire country.

01:11:38.910 --> 01:11:40.260
-Coal emissions move.

01:11:42.000 --> 01:11:43.510
Pollutants don\'t need passports.

01:11:47.020 --> 01:11:49.950
-The EPA has announced that in 48 states,

01:11:50.310 --> 01:11:55.240
it\'s unsafe to eat many freshwater fish
due to mercury contamination

01:11:57.680 --> 01:12:00.840
and we are warned not to eat tuna more
than once a week.

01:12:02.770 --> 01:12:06.600
Mercury from power plants
has poisoned the oceans too.

01:12:18.420 --> 01:12:21.860
-Work to save Coal River Mountain. Do it.

01:12:22.150 --> 01:12:24.730
Let them hear your voice in
that building back there.

01:12:32.460 --> 01:12:33.620
-You’re doing something right.

01:12:33.660 --> 01:12:34.770
-Yes, let’s do something right.

01:12:34.770 --> 01:12:35.770
-The others aren’t right.

01:12:35.770 --> 01:12:36.770
-That’s what I\'m doing.

01:12:36.770 --> 01:12:37.930
- [?] but just not from here.

01:12:38.220 --> 01:12:39.730
This is our state. Our jobs.

01:12:40.260 --> 01:12:45.880
-I\'m living in a state where I can\'t eat the fish
because the mercury contamination [?].

01:12:45.880 --> 01:12:48.860
-It could be from the chemical plants.

01:12:49.040 --> 01:12:53.530
[?]

01:12:55.400 --> 01:12:58.350
-The mercury is coming
from coal burning power plants.

01:12:58.640 --> 01:13:00.110
That’s what the science says.

01:13:00.110 --> 01:13:02.240
-No. Coal has been used
since engines have been around.

01:13:02.240 --> 01:13:04.400
-[?] off the property. [?].

01:13:04.620 --> 01:13:05.040
-Sure.

01:13:05.730 --> 01:13:07.730
-Anyway, it was good talking to you, gentlemen.

01:13:09.970 --> 01:13:11.220
-Good afternoon.

01:13:11.910 --> 01:13:16.350
My name is Lorelei Scarbro
and I live in the Coal River Valley.

01:13:16.930 --> 01:13:20.440
I am West Virginia born
and raised up in here all my life.

01:13:20.930 --> 01:13:24.150
My father, my grandfather,
my brothers, my uncles,

01:13:24.150 --> 01:13:28.680
my husband and my son-in-law
all either were or are coal miners.

01:13:29.400 --> 01:13:31.370
-Activists like Lorelei Scarbro

01:13:31.770 --> 01:13:34.020
want to bring new jobs to their community.

01:13:34.600 --> 01:13:38.240
-We need clean jobs.
We need all the jobs we can get here

01:13:38.240 --> 01:13:43.930
and you guys need to come with us to try
to make sure that we all have a future here.

01:13:44.170 --> 01:13:44.910
Thank you.

01:13:47.220 --> 01:13:51.400
-Lorelei, working with other activists,
has proposed an alternative,

01:13:52.020 --> 01:13:54.840
a wind farm on the ridges
of Coal River Mountain

01:13:55.970 --> 01:13:59.600
and they\'ve worked with Google to create
a map that explains their plan.

01:14:01.280 --> 01:14:05.150
-My name is Lorelei Scarbro
and I live in Rock Creek, West Virginia

01:14:05.260 --> 01:14:07.600
at the foot of Coal River Mountain.

01:14:08.400 --> 01:14:16.510
A coal company plans to mine over 6,000 acres
of Coal River Mountain shown here in black.

01:14:17.660 --> 01:14:21.440
As soon as we heard about
the proposed mountaintop removal mine,

01:14:21.640 --> 01:14:25.310
we came together as a community
and proposed a better alternative,

01:14:25.620 --> 01:14:27.930
a sustainable wind farm.

01:14:28.240 --> 01:14:31.170
It would provide permanent jobs
for our community

01:14:31.440 --> 01:14:34.400
not to mention renewable energy forever.

01:14:38.460 --> 01:14:42.950
-Wind farms in the mountains of West Virginia
are already a reality.

01:14:44.000 --> 01:14:48.110
Three of them operate today powering
over 90,000 homes.

01:14:51.460 --> 01:14:54.800
-We believe that a higher
and better use for Coal River Mountain

01:14:54.800 --> 01:14:58.820
certainly is a windmill farm
as opposed to mountaintop removal.

01:14:59.330 --> 01:15:01.950
This particular mountain
has amazing wind potential.

01:15:02.600 --> 01:15:05.860
We can produce enough energy
on this mountain to power 70,000 homes.

01:15:06.200 --> 01:15:11.000
-Local organization raised the money,
not the government of West Virginia,

01:15:11.480 --> 01:15:15.660
to do a feasibility study
of the wind viability on Coal River Mountain

01:15:15.660 --> 01:15:18.970
and it was determined that it was excellent,
excellent.

01:15:19.240 --> 01:15:22.170
-In fact the Coal River Mountain is class five,

01:15:22.440 --> 01:15:25.020
one of the highest classes,
of wind capability.

01:15:27.400 --> 01:15:34.930
-Studies have been done that show 20 years
of jobs being produced year in, year out

01:15:35.170 --> 01:15:40.040
if you produce wind compared to fewer jobs
that are short-term,

01:15:40.200 --> 01:15:41.330
if you blow the mountain up.

01:15:41.600 --> 01:15:42.770
-It’s very, very toxic.

01:15:43.620 --> 01:15:46.220
-Because of a long-standing deal
with the state,

01:15:46.710 --> 01:15:50.970
coal companies only pay a small tax
to the counties in which the coal is mined.

01:15:52.220 --> 01:15:55.310
A wind farm would be required
to pay a much higher rate.

01:15:56.330 --> 01:16:00.930
-This County stands to gain $1.742 million

01:16:01.130 --> 01:16:05.400
from this mountain annually as opposed
to what the county would earn

01:16:05.480 --> 01:16:10.370
from the mountaintop removal operation
which is $36,000 a year.

01:16:10.370 --> 01:16:12.220
-If Massey blows up the mountain,

01:16:12.820 --> 01:16:15.910
the county gets $30,000 a year for 17 years.

01:16:16.550 --> 01:16:19.420
Then Massey leaves
with its pockets stuffed with cash

01:16:20.150 --> 01:16:23.350
and you’re left with a denuded moonscape.

01:16:24.550 --> 01:16:29.060
If you put the wind farms up there,
the county gets 1.7--

01:16:29.840 --> 01:16:31.350
-42 million.

01:16:31.350 --> 01:16:35.840
-1.7 basically $1.75 million a year.

01:16:35.840 --> 01:16:36.460
-Annual.

01:16:36.460 --> 01:16:38.080
-Annually, forever.

01:16:43.330 --> 01:16:47.040
The battle over Coal River Mountain
is that a critical battle for your community.

01:16:47.040 --> 01:16:50.880
-It’s very critical and when these mountains
here was destroyed,

01:16:50.880 --> 01:16:56.310
there was 400 megawatts of energy destroyed--
wind energy destroyed and it\'s critical.

01:16:56.330 --> 01:16:57.460
That’s our last mountain.

01:16:57.460 --> 01:17:00.950
That’s the last one we have to
where we can pull ourselves up out of this gap

01:17:00.950 --> 01:17:03.020
that the coal industry has put us in.

01:17:04.550 --> 01:17:07.660
Without that, there\'s no chance
that the people here

01:17:07.660 --> 01:17:11.730
in the coal fields
will ever have anything permanent.

01:17:14.510 --> 01:17:16.460
-In October 2009,

01:17:16.880 --> 01:17:21.440
Massey Energy begins blasting
at its first mine site on Coal River Mountain.

01:17:23.060 --> 01:17:26.200
Destroying the ridges would threaten
the proposed wind project

01:17:27.310 --> 01:17:31.350
so the locals and Climate Ground Zero
decide to take action.

01:17:38.200 --> 01:17:40.710
-We got dropped off probably
about nine o\'clock at night.

01:17:41.130 --> 01:17:43.060
We had to walk seven miles in the dark,

01:17:43.950 --> 01:17:49.420
in the snow and rain carrying
a 60-pound pack on a 30 pound

01:17:49.800 --> 01:17:54.480
awkward plywood plank up
a 1,300 elevation gain.

01:17:58.220 --> 01:18:02.770
It’s pretty physically grueling
and tensions were high,

01:18:03.200 --> 01:18:08.020
but we managed to stay pretty quiet
and right when we get in the trees,

01:18:08.240 --> 01:18:11.840
the lights from the machines come on
and it was just perfect timing.

01:18:12.460 --> 01:18:17.040
There are people working down below
and just their faces were priceless

01:18:17.040 --> 01:18:22.710
and it was worth every bit of it to just see
them be like, oh, how did this happen?

01:18:23.710 --> 01:18:26.600
-Eric Smith, Amber Richmond and Eric Blemings

01:18:26.840 --> 01:18:32.220
are on platforms approximately 60 feet up
on two poplar trees and one oak tree.

01:18:32.970 --> 01:18:35.950
Whoo-hoo, deal with that Don Blankenship.

01:18:37.930 --> 01:18:40.000
whoo-hoo, oh, God.

01:18:40.000 --> 01:18:41.000
-Yes. Perfect timing.

01:18:43.680 --> 01:18:46.130
-First day was really dangerous.

01:18:48.080 --> 01:18:51.510
The danger level is really,
really intense up there.

01:18:54.840 --> 01:18:58.310
-The most famous tactic they used
for harassment was the sound machines

01:18:58.640 --> 01:19:03.040
playing it way over the decibel level
for permanent ear damage.

01:19:07.460 --> 01:19:11.460
23 hours a day they\'re playing that
so you have to learn how to sleep through that,

01:19:11.460 --> 01:19:14.820
you have to learn how to just keep
your mind from cracking.

01:19:26.150 --> 01:19:27.820
-The tree sitters are hanging in there.

01:19:28.530 --> 01:19:31.750
They are totally strong and they\'re up beat.

01:19:34.330 --> 01:19:36.150
They’re going to be up there for a while.

01:19:39.200 --> 01:19:42.370
-The Climate Ground Zero
protesters remain in the trees

01:19:42.880 --> 01:19:45.170
until a winter blizzard forces them down.

01:19:45.880 --> 01:19:50.970
They’d stopped Massey Energy from blasting
on Coal River Mountain for nine days.

01:19:52.200 --> 01:19:55.970
-In jail, I got to talk to some deep miners.
I got to talk to a truck driver.

01:19:57.260 --> 01:20:00.510
Everybody in my cell block
just really interested to see like

01:20:01.040 --> 01:20:04.000
why is this person here from out of state?
Why does he care?

01:20:04.800 --> 01:20:07.710
Why would he sit in a tree next to dynamite?

01:20:09.620 --> 01:20:12.310
These corporations like Massey,
they don\'t have any boundaries.

01:20:12.730 --> 01:20:15.330
Why should we have boundaries?
It’s time for us to stand up

01:20:15.660 --> 01:20:20.530
as a national community and address
these issues and have perspective.

01:20:32.170 --> 01:20:35.710
-Coal River Mountain stands
as a symbol of what could be

01:20:36.040 --> 01:20:39.200
and what the future of America,
not just Appalachia,

01:20:39.200 --> 01:20:40.840
but what the future of America can hold.

01:20:50.200 --> 01:20:53.350
-600 miles away on the coast of Rhode Island

01:20:53.770 --> 01:20:56.600
is a Catholic boarding school
called Portsmouth Abbey.

01:20:59.840 --> 01:21:03.480
-We\'ve got around 350 kids in the school,
most of them live here,

01:21:03.480 --> 01:21:05.060
they come from all over the world.

01:21:06.800 --> 01:21:10.800
We tell the kids you need to be responsible
stewards of the property

01:21:10.800 --> 01:21:12.930
and the grounds and do green things.

01:21:12.930 --> 01:21:16.480
This was our, put your money
where your mouth is.

01:21:18.330 --> 01:21:21.480
-To reduce their greenhouse gas emissions
and utility bills,

01:21:22.220 --> 01:21:26.860
the Abbey built the first utility-scale
wind turbine in the state of Rhode Island.

01:21:28.570 --> 01:21:31.640
-My job was to convince the monks
that we should try this.

01:21:31.930 --> 01:21:35.770
We figured that if I could convince the monks,
we could convince anybody to do this.

01:21:36.060 --> 01:21:39.510
We involved the neighbors right
from the very beginning

01:21:39.510 --> 01:21:43.080
when we really didn\'t know anything other
than it was going to be really big.

01:21:43.510 --> 01:21:44.840
The neighbors were great.

01:21:44.840 --> 01:21:47.680
They were very supportive right
from the start.

01:21:48.930 --> 01:21:50.710
Because it\'s a good windy day today,

01:21:50.840 --> 01:21:53.930
we\'re getting all of our power
for the whole school from here.

01:21:54.060 --> 01:21:55.950
It’s about 35 buildings.

01:21:56.330 --> 01:21:59.220
We’ve been up and running now
for just over four years.

01:21:59.220 --> 01:22:06.130
We get on average about 40% of our
total electric comes from this one turbine

01:22:06.130 --> 01:22:09.260
and it has paid itself off already
in four years.

01:22:10.640 --> 01:22:14.130
-Clearly you\'ve convinced other people
to do the same thing. There’s another-

01:22:14.130 --> 01:22:14.640
-Right.

01:22:14.660 --> 01:22:17.200
--windmill right there. How [?] is that one?

01:22:17.200 --> 01:22:19.600
-That’s the town of Portsmouth.
The town we live in.

01:22:21.000 --> 01:22:24.060
-Portsmouth Abbey took the lead
in being the first community

01:22:24.060 --> 01:22:26.110
to bring a wind generator to our town.

01:22:26.880 --> 01:22:28.570
We saw how successful that was

01:22:28.570 --> 01:22:31.170
and then we began to investigate
the possibilities

01:22:31.170 --> 01:22:33.730
that we might be able do the same thing
for the municipality.

01:22:36.570 --> 01:22:40.370
We did an analysis to whether or not
a wind generator would work economically

01:22:40.400 --> 01:22:43.510
in our town and the net results are here.

01:22:45.860 --> 01:22:49.000
We’re generating
about roughly three-quarters

01:22:49.000 --> 01:22:51.680
of our town\'s electrical municipal needs.

01:22:57.440 --> 01:23:00.510
-We\'re looking at a proposal now
to construct a wind farm

01:23:00.550 --> 01:23:02.620
in Coal River Mountain in West Virginia.

01:23:03.680 --> 01:23:06.680
They have winds of category five. Very high.

01:23:07.800 --> 01:23:09.950
What category do you have here?

01:23:09.950 --> 01:23:11.840
-Yes, that\'s much better than we have here.

01:23:11.840 --> 01:23:14.530
Our winds here are category two winds.

01:23:19.880 --> 01:23:23.110
-We have a lot of visitors, a lot of other
communities that come here to ask us

01:23:23.110 --> 01:23:25.860
about how we\'ve done this
and can it work in their community?

01:23:26.330 --> 01:23:29.840
The answer basically is as long
as you have wind available

01:23:29.840 --> 01:23:32.350
and a space to put the machine,
it can work in your town.

01:23:34.620 --> 01:23:37.800
-Construction of wind turbines
would rapidly accelerate

01:23:38.370 --> 01:23:42.660
if electricity bills included the full cost
of mining and burning coal.

01:23:45.750 --> 01:23:47.550
If you made them pay the true cost

01:23:47.970 --> 01:23:51.200
of polluting all of our rivers with mercury
and with acid rain,

01:23:51.200 --> 01:23:53.460
of destroying the forests
of the Appalachians,

01:23:53.840 --> 01:23:57.480
of killing tens of thousands
of Americans every year,

01:23:58.800 --> 01:24:01.550
if you force them to pay
the true cost of production,

01:24:02.060 --> 01:24:07.420
there is no way that they could compete
for even a single day in the marketplace.

01:24:10.600 --> 01:24:12.600
-Even with the subsidies to coal,

01:24:13.080 --> 01:24:18.020
the wind industry in the US already
operates more than 35,000 turbines

01:24:18.660 --> 01:24:24.420
and employs 85,000 people,
as many as work in the coal industry.

01:24:26.950 --> 01:24:33.080
In 2009 alone, enough wind turbines
were built to power 2.4 million homes.

01:24:35.260 --> 01:24:37.530
-Great Plains states for [?] of wind.

01:24:40.240 --> 01:24:43.570
We have enough wind in North Dakota,
Montana and Texas

01:24:43.570 --> 01:24:46.640
to provide 100% of the energy needs
of our country

01:24:47.220 --> 01:24:49.220
even if every American own electric car.

01:24:53.710 --> 01:24:56.550
-Maximizing the power of renewable energy

01:24:56.820 --> 01:25:01.220
requires the US to replace its old
and deteriorating power grid.

01:25:03.770 --> 01:25:08.150
-We can build a national smart grid
across the country

01:25:08.150 --> 01:25:13.600
the same way that Eisenhower did with the
highway system during the 1950\'s and 1960s.

01:25:16.680 --> 01:25:21.460
-This giant construction project
would create almost 300,000 jobs,

01:25:22.620 --> 01:25:27.440
but cost less than the United States
spends on four months of oil imports,

01:25:32.130 --> 01:25:35.080
but renewable energy
has powerful opponents.

01:25:35.840 --> 01:25:38.770
-You’re looking at the most abundant fuel
in our country.

01:25:38.930 --> 01:25:41.110
You’re looking at an American resource

01:25:41.130 --> 01:25:45.200
that will help us toward vital energy
security into the next century,

01:25:45.510 --> 01:25:50.860
but most of all you\'re looking at
50% of our electricity, coal,

01:25:51.440 --> 01:25:54.330
it’s the resource that generates half
of our electricity.

01:25:55.000 --> 01:25:57.820
It’s the fuel that powers our way of life.

01:26:00.480 --> 01:26:05.150
-The Obama administration
is committed to a new energy economy,

01:26:05.640 --> 01:26:09.510
but Barack Obama is fighting a very strong

01:26:09.510 --> 01:26:11.710
and entrenched political force

01:26:12.200 --> 01:26:16.420
that is well-endowed with money
and political power and intensity.

01:26:17.370 --> 01:26:21.370
That has some of the leading politicians
not only in the Republican Party,

01:26:21.370 --> 01:26:24.950
but the Democratic Party who are going
to protect the interests of coal.

01:26:26.550 --> 01:26:28.060
-The Obama administration,

01:26:28.420 --> 01:26:30.800
despite its support for renewable energy

01:26:31.310 --> 01:26:34.080
has not yet
begun protecting Appalachian rivers

01:26:34.260 --> 01:26:36.480
from the effects of mountaintop removal.

01:26:38.020 --> 01:26:40.710
-The Obama administration could change

01:26:40.710 --> 01:26:43.680
the definition of fill back to
what it was before.

01:26:44.420 --> 01:26:46.530
That’s what we\'re asking
the administration to do.

01:26:47.220 --> 01:26:50.040
We’ve been asking the Obama administration
for nearly a year to do this

01:26:50.040 --> 01:26:51.350
and I\'ll have to be honest with you,

01:26:51.350 --> 01:26:53.770
I\'m not seeing
the Obama administration go there yet.

01:26:54.130 --> 01:26:56.350
We get a lot of sympathy
from the administration

01:26:56.350 --> 01:27:00.750
and we hear what you\'re saying, but no action.

01:27:04.080 --> 01:27:08.240
-Finally, in the Fall of 2009, a breakthrough.

01:27:11.420 --> 01:27:16.130
-Bobby was in meeting with the chief
of staff to President Obama

01:27:16.930 --> 01:27:19.130
discussing mountaintop removal
coal mining

01:27:20.260 --> 01:27:24.370
and this was shortly
after his Uncle Ted passed away

01:27:24.710 --> 01:27:28.730
and the president stopped
in to express his condolences.

01:27:30.060 --> 01:27:35.620
Bobby lobbied President Obama
about mountaintop removal coal mining.

01:27:38.440 --> 01:27:40.800
-Two days later, there\'s news.

01:27:42.530 --> 01:27:44.750
-The Environmental Protection Agency
has announced

01:27:44.750 --> 01:27:47.080
it will scrutinize 79 applications

01:27:47.080 --> 01:27:49.950
for mountaintop coal mine permits
in Appalachia

01:27:49.950 --> 01:27:52.400
to guard against damage to water supplies.

01:27:53.550 --> 01:27:55.440
-The agency soon goes further,

01:27:55.950 --> 01:27:59.970
issuing stricter guidelines that make it
even more difficult to grant permits

01:28:00.220 --> 01:28:02.800
for new mountaintop removal mines.

01:28:03.820 --> 01:28:07.130
-Coal communities should not have
to sacrifice their environment

01:28:07.550 --> 01:28:11.020
or their health or their economic future
to mountaintop mining.

01:28:11.480 --> 01:28:14.880
They deserve the full protection
of our clean water laws.

01:28:18.110 --> 01:28:19.820
-But permits for Coal River Mountain

01:28:20.370 --> 01:28:22.820
were granted under
the previous administration

01:28:24.220 --> 01:28:27.310
and Massey continues
to push forward with its plans.

01:28:41.640 --> 01:28:45.150
-If the wind farm proposal will go through,
that\'s what we could be looking at right now.

01:28:45.150 --> 01:28:47.880
We can be looking at wind turbines
all along these ridge tops there

01:28:48.930 --> 01:28:50.200
and the mountains preserved.

01:28:51.350 --> 01:28:54.240
It\'s just greed.

01:28:54.510 --> 01:28:55.860
There’s no other way to explain it.

01:28:56.480 --> 01:28:58.910
They’re bound and determined to knock
the mountain down.

01:29:00.400 --> 01:29:01.970
We\'re bound and determined to stop it.

01:29:06.130 --> 01:29:09.080
-Coal is mean, coal is cruel and coal kills

01:29:10.040 --> 01:29:13.970
and the American people need
to find their position where that is.

01:29:14.260 --> 01:29:16.770
You’re connected to coal
whether you realize it or not.

01:29:16.770 --> 01:29:18.260
Everybody’s connected to this

01:29:18.440 --> 01:29:21.280
and everybody\'s causing it
and everybody\'s allowing it.

01:29:23.750 --> 01:29:57.660
[MUSIC]

01:30:08.150 --> 01:30:11.040
-The government of Ontario, Canada
has decided

01:30:11.040 --> 01:30:15.770
to decommission all
of its coal-fired powerplants by 2014.

01:30:16.750 --> 01:30:20.110
It will replace them largely
with renewable energy.

01:30:21.680 --> 01:30:32.260
[MUSIC]

01:30:34.000 --> 01:30:39.440
From your tower, you say you see the way to go

01:30:39.640 --> 01:30:45.770
But you won\'t climb down
No you won\'t climb down

01:30:46.730 --> 01:30:51.930
Seems you\'d know by now just
how to pick your battles, girl

01:30:52.310 --> 01:30:58.600
But you want your control
You want your control

01:31:12.240 --> 01:31:17.370
You came on so easy singing \"gentle on my mind\"

01:31:18.040 --> 01:31:23.860
But a few months in your stuff grew thin
From the trouble of another time

01:31:24.770 --> 01:31:30.150
There you go again pretending
you know what goes on

01:31:30.420 --> 01:31:36.280
You say you want resolution
I say you want your control

01:31:37.530 --> 01:31:42.860
Rebel\'s got no mind to forfeit

01:31:43.260 --> 01:31:49.730
Fortune teller,
tell me how it won\'t be changing

01:31:50.260 --> 01:31:56.330
Bit by bit, arms started shaking
Spinning and now the kids wanna make it

01:31:56.680 --> 01:32:02.730
Piece by piece cold time erasing
What we want and what we\'ll be taking

01:32:03.200 --> 01:32:09.170
What we want and what we\'ll be taking
It\'s no choice if it\'s just another

01:32:09.170 --> 01:32:14.170
Reaction we can skip the details and be done

01:32:14.710 --> 01:32:20.880
And I won\'t go back, no, I won\'t go back

01:32:21.860 --> 01:32:28.260
Then it comes, I get a funny feeling sometimes

01:32:28.260 --> 01:32:33.600
I don\'t know why, no, I don\'t know why

01:32:34.550 --> 01:32:40.800
Rebel\'s got no mind to forfeit

01:32:40.800 --> 01:32:46.970
Fortune teller,
tell me how it won\'t be changing

01:32:47.220 --> 01:32:53.550
Bit by bit, arms started shaking
Spinning and now the kids wanna make it

01:32:53.550 --> 01:32:59.750
Piece by piece cold time erasing
What we want and what we\'ll be taking

01:33:00.060 --> 01:33:06.310
What we want and what we\'ll be taking
It\'s no choice if it\'s just another

01:33:07.170 --> 01:33:11.530
oohh

01:33:31.840 --> 01:33:38.170
Then it comes, I get a funny feeling sometimes

01:33:38.170 --> 01:33:43.310
I don\'t know why, no, I don\'t know why

01:33:44.620 --> 01:33:56.800
Rebel\'s got no mind to forfeit Fortune teller,
tell me how it won\'t be changing

01:33:57.330 --> 01:34:03.440
Bit by bit, arms started shaking
Spinning and now the kids wanna make it

01:34:03.680 --> 01:34:09.970
Piece by piece cold time erasing
What we want and what we\'ll be taking

01:34:09.970 --> 01:34:16.400
What we want and what we\'ll be taking
It\'s no choice if it\'s just another

01:34:17.000 --> 01:34:22.910
ooh

01:34:30.680 --> 01:34:57.350
[MUSIC]

"One of the most compelling environmental documentaries I've ever seen" - Dave Paiz, The Loft Cinema


Awards

Official Selection: 2011 Sundance Film Festival, 2011 Full Frame Documenary Film Festival

Citation

Main credits

Kennedy, Robert Francis (on-screen participant)
Sadler, William (narrator)
Haney, William M. (film producer)
Haney, William M. (film director)
Haney, William M. (screenwriter)
Rhodes, Peter (screenwriter)
Bingham, Clara (film producer)
Grunebaum, Eric (film producer)

Other credits

Principal cinematographers, Jerry Risius, Stephen McCarthy, Tim Hotchner; edited by Peter Rhodes; original music by Claudio Ragazzi.


Distributor credits

Clara Bingham;Eric Grunebaum;Bill Haney;

Haney,Bill

Co-Producer- Laura Longsworth

Executive Producers- Tim Disney, Sarah Johnson Redlich, Tim Rockwood

Cinematographers- Jerry Risius, Stephen McCarthy, Tim Hotchner

Editor- Peter Rhodes

Principal Sound Recordist- Mark Mandler

Composer- Claudio Ragazzi

Docuseek subjects

Government Policy
Environment
Environmental Justice
Geography
Ethics
Energy Sector
Resource Planning and Management
Human Rights
Rural Studies
Documentary Films
Water
Poverty
North American Studies
Business Ethics
Corporate Social Responsibility
Pollution
Toxic Chemicals
Occupational Health and Safety
Trade Unions
Work
Mining Sector
Communication and Media Studies
Mountains
Energy
Fossil Fuels
Geology
Rivers
Mining
Clean Water
Conflict Resolution
Appalachia

Distributor subjects

Activism
Bioregions and Habitat
Climate Change
Conflict Resolution
Environmental Geography
Environmental Justice
Environmental Law
Government
Habitat Loss
Mining
North American Studies
Occupational Health and Safety
Rivers
Sustainability
Toxic Chemicals
Trade Unions
United States
Water
Wetlands

Keywords

"The Last Mountain",United States,Bill Haney,coal country,strip mining,mountaintop removal,mining,Coal River Mountain,Appalachia,West Virginia,Massey Energy,Alpha Natural Resources,Robert F. Kenned Jr.,Maria Gunnoe,Joe Lovett,Bo Webb,Ed Wiley,Jennifer Hall-Massey,West Virginia Coal Association,Don Blankenship,Climate Ground Zero,Mountain Justice,civil disobedience,Appalachia,Alan Hershkowitz,Natural Resources Defense Council,NRDC,Gus Speth,Michael Shnayerson,greenhouse gas emissions,arsenic,lead,pollution,Prenter,Bob White,Governor Joe Manchin,Environmental Protection Agency,EPA,community,health,toxic waste,"Last Mountain",Global Environmental Justice,

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