The Trump administration’s Department of the Interior has asked the National Academy of Sciences to suspend research into the health effects of mountaintop removal coal mining. A team from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine was established last year for a two-year study. The committee has been conducting hearings and investigating accumulating science on the health impacts of surface mining, especially the practice known as mountaintop removal.
Appalachia is bleeding population; the 2015 U.S. Census showed West Virginia was losing population faster than most other states. There’s a struggle to leave, and to stay.