Category Archives: Environment

Shameful PA Budget Deal Takeaway from Working Families Giveaway to Gas Drillers

Plan would destroy state forests on altar of natural gas industry

Drilling Rig on Marcellus Shale
Drilling Rig on Marcellus Shale

The proposed budget deal announced September 11, 2009 includes a massive giveaway to huge, multi-national energy corporations that want substantial and immediate access to drill, baby, drill in our public forests and parks.

Tell your state legislators that opening up much of the state’s forest lands to gas drilling is NOT the way that Pennsylvania should solve its budget crisis.

Greedy gas companies spent more than one million dollars lobbying state government this year, and it looks like it paid off. The state budget does not include a severance tax on natural gas drilling even though it injures Pennsylvania taxpayers. To add insult to injury, the budget deal also opens up state parks and forests to gas drillers. Because gas prices have fallen, gas leasing prices have also fallen, so now giant multi-national energy corporations will be able to make a sweetheart deal to lock up leases at bargain basement prices.

Continue reading Shameful PA Budget Deal Takeaway from Working Families Giveaway to Gas Drillers

Mine safety advocates praise Obama’s choice to lead agency

By Halimah Abdullah | McClatchy Newspapers

WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama’s choice to head the federal Mine Safety and Health Administration signals a dramatic shift from his predecessor on mine safety issues.

The selection of Joseph Main, the retired longtime safety and health administrator for the United Mine Workers of America to head MSHA, drew praise from safety advocates and criticism from the coal industry.

Continue reading Mine safety advocates praise Obama’s choice to lead agency

Thirty Arrested at WV ‘Mountaintop Removal’ Protest

Mountaintop removal protest:
Finding a path forward?

by Ken Ward Jr.
The Charleston Gazette

SUNDIAL, W.Va. — It was quite a scene outside Massey Energy’s Goals Coal Co. operation Tuesday.

First, there were the protesters — a mix of West Virginia residents and those darned out-of-state agitators — playing some hillbilly music, doing some speechifying, and then marching down W.Va. 3 in the hopes of being carted off by State Police troopers, joining the ranks of those who have been arrested in the growing civil disobedience campaign against mountaintop removal.

Then, there were the miners and their families. They revved up motorcycle engines, honked air horns and did one heck of a lot of yelling, all trying to drown out the protesters. Then, of course, they massed together, blocking the entrance to the mine site, thwarting any hopes the other side had of trespassing on Massey property.
And oh yeah, Daryl Hannah was there — and she smiled and waved as she got hauled off in a nice, blue-and-gold trooper cruiser. There was also some guy named James Hansen, who happens to be one of the world’s top climate scientists. He got arrested, too.

Continue reading Thirty Arrested at WV ‘Mountaintop Removal’ Protest

Green Jobs 2009: Steelworkers Meet Hip-Hoppers and Tree-Huggers


Photo: AFLCIO’s Richard Trumka at Green Jobs 2009

Blue-Green Insurgency
Gets Fired Up at the
DC Green Jobs Conference

By Carl Davidson
Beaver County Blue

When you walk into a large and stately Washington, DC hotel lobby and find it teeming with thousands of smiling, buzzing people-half in labor union jackets and ball caps, the other half dressed in 30-something hip-hop causal-you know some special is happening.

This was the lively, energized scene for three cold wintry days this Feb 4-6 at the Marriott Wardman Park Hotel, as nearly 3000 activists and organizers gathered for the “Good Jobs, Green Jobs” National Conference. The gathering was convened by more than 100 organizations, representing every major trade union and every major environmental group in the country, among others. Continue reading Green Jobs 2009: Steelworkers Meet Hip-Hoppers and Tree-Huggers