News

News
5:01 pm
Wed July 16, 2014

85-Year-Old Says He is Still in Good Health and Spirits and Will Continue to Fast

Roland Micklem (bottom right) was joined by environmental supporters at Haddad Park in Charleston on Wednesday, July 16th. On the far left is Mike Roselle, who is also fasting with Micklem.
Credit Roxy Todd

85-year-old Roland Micklem is still fasting at the West Virginia Capitol Building. He began his fast ten days ago to draw attention to the effects of climate change, and he says he will continue to go without food. Since July 7th, Micklem has eaten no food and has consumed only water, juice and coffee.

“My health is excellent. I am very much encouraged and motivated by the reception I've been receiving by the people we've run across. Everyone has been supportive and cooperative,” says Micklem.

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Investigation
2:38 pm
Wed July 16, 2014

The Five Things You Need to Know About the CSB's Preliminary Investigation at Freedom Industries

Johnnie Banks presented the Chemical Safety Board's preliminary findings on the Freedom Industries spill Wednesday.
Credit Ashton Marra / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

Investigators from the U. S. Chemical Safety Board presented preliminary findings Wednesday from their investigation into the January chemical leak at Freedom Industries in Charleston.

Lead Investigator Johnnie Banks explained the process they’ve gone through collecting evidence and information and said they will soon begin to analyze that data to put together a final report and recommendations.

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Ecology
2:15 pm
Wed July 16, 2014

National Park Service Seeks Volunteers for Sampling

Credit Wikimedia Commons

The National Park Service in Glen Jean is gearing up for a sampling program and is looking for volunteers. 


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Healthy Children
12:28 pm
Wed July 16, 2014

Youth Program Provides Home Away From Home

REACHH children learn yoga
Credit Jessica Lilly

While you would think all children would be excited to be away from school this summer, many throughout the state continue to go. 

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Ginseng
8:18 am
Wed July 16, 2014

Stakeholders Meet for Ginseng Summit, Discuss Industry To-Dos, To-Don’ts, Ta-Das

Panax quinquefolius foliage and fruit
Credit www.botanicus.org/item/31753000788239

Ginseng annually brings millions of dollars in revenue into Appalachia. But its future as a revenue option, or even its existence at all in these parts is far from certain. Growers are struggling to conserve the plant and ensure the vitality of the industry. Those concerns as well as new research that sheds light on the therapeutic qualities of the plant were discussed at the 2014 Ginseng Summit.

A small gathering of key stakeholders in the ginseng industry gathered at the Golden Seal Botanical Sanctuary just outside the small town of Rutland, in Meigs County Ohio, to discuss important topics surrounding the medicinal root.

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West Virginia Morning
7:58 am
Wed July 16, 2014

The 2014 Ginseng Summit, Tourism Focused on Local Farms and Food & Appalachian Echoes

Beth Vorhees hosts West Virginia Morning Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Glynis Board reports from the 2014 Ginseng Summit  and food tourism continues to grow in Appalachia with a new culinary map that shows where to find the best. Also, our friends at Traveling 219 bring us a story on an old time music workshop in Marlinton, West Virginia. 

News
6:00 am
Wed July 16, 2014

Mapping Appalachia's Food and Farm to Table Destinations

Jennifer "Tootie" Jones raises grass-fed beef and sells to about 14 restaurants and retail shops across W.Va.
Credit Roxy Todd

Agri-tourism is not a new concept to Jennifer "Tootie" Jones. A fifth generation farmer, she raises grass fed beef on Swift Level Farm in Lewisburg. She was one of the farmers who attended yesterday’s event at the Capitol Market. She sells beef to 14 West Virginia restaurants and several retail stores, some of which are featured on a new online map, called Bon Appétit Appalachia, a project by the Appalachian Regional Commission. There’s also a print map, which lists 283 food destinations across the region, including:

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Tank Demolition
6:22 pm
Tue July 15, 2014

Photos & Video: Demolition of Freedom Industries Site Begins

Credit Dave Mistich / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

Freedom Industries contractors began the demolition process  at the site of a January chemical leak that tainted the water supply of 300,000 West Virginians. Contractors knocked out a wall and ripped piping materials from the tanks Tuesday.

Freedom Chief Restructuring Officer Mark Welch said four tanks will remain up to store stormwater and waste at the site until their contents are removed.  He said, at that point, the contents will be removed and those tanks will be torn down at the end of the process.  

Welch says Tank No. 396, which is the tank that stored MCHM and leaked into the river on January 9, will be demolished sometime next week. 

Here are some images of the site just before and during the initial phases of the demolition process:

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Chemical Spill
5:06 pm
Tue July 15, 2014

Tank Demolition Underway at Freedom Site

Credit Dave Mistich / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

Demolition has started on at the site of a January chemical spill in Charleston that contaminated public drinking water for 300,000 West Virginians.

Independence Excavating began the demolition process Tuesday by knocking down a brick wall, tearing out piping, and removing materials connected to the tanks. Freedom Chief Restructuring Officer Mark Welch says the first cuts to the tanks will come Wednesday.

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News
11:51 am
Tue July 15, 2014

MSHA, Widows Agree to Settle Mine Fire Lawsuit

The U.S. Mine Safety and Health Administration has agreed to pay $1 million to settle a lawsuit over the deaths of two miners in a 2006 fire at an underground coal mine in West Virginia.

Under the proposed settlement, MSHA also agreed to develop a training course at the National Mine Safety and Health Academy near Beckley on preventing fires at underground coal and non-metal mines.

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Athletics
11:40 am
Tue July 15, 2014

Marshall Football Coach's Contract Extended

  Marshall University has extended the contract of coach Doc Holliday two years and raised the payouts for the incentives in the deal.

Athletic director Mike Hamrick announced Monday that Holliday's contract now runs through the 2017 season.

Holliday is 27-24 at Marshall and coming off a 10-4 season. His base salary of $600,000 will stay the same but his new deal increases his incentives to a total of $145,000 if they are reached.

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Law & Order
11:29 am
Tue July 15, 2014

Two Plead Guilty in Arch Coal Kickback Scheme

Two men each face up to five years in prison after admitting that they lied to investigators about a kickback scheme at a coal mine.

U.S. Attorney Booth Goodwin says 53-year-old Ronald Barnette of Holden and 62-year-old Gary Griffith of Oceana both pleaded guilty Monday to making a materially false statement in a federal matter.

Barnette's company, Mining Repair Specialist, Inc., did equipment rebuild work at Arch Coal's Mountain Laurel mining complex in Logan County. He admitted that he lied about paying kickbacks to Mountain Laurel's general manager.

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Environment
10:45 am
Tue July 15, 2014

State Investigates Sheen on Monongahela River in Fairmont

Credit Department of Environmental Protection

  State environmental regulators are investigating a sheen on the Monongahela River in Fairmont.

The Department of Environmental Protection tells media outlets that the substance appeared to be petroleum based.

The DEP says the substance won't affect Fairmont's water supply. The city's water intake is upstream on the Tygart Valley River.

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Economy
10:25 am
Tue July 15, 2014

Former W.Va. Gov. Caperton Joins Insurance Broker

Credit Asia Society Paternership for Global Learning / wikimedia Commons

  Former West Virginia Gov. Gaston Caperton has been appointed as a senior adviser to an insurance broker.

USI Insurance Services says in a news release that Caperton will help strengthen the company's client base in Kentucky, Virginia and West Virginia and seek new areas of investment.

Caperton will be based out of USI's Charleston office.

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West Virginia Morning
8:21 am
Tue July 15, 2014

Dueling Campaign Rallies, Transportation Issues, Photo Project

On West Virginia Morning, a report about dueling political rallies as two major out of state politicians stump for their party's candidates for United States Senate.  Ashton Marra reports on that and transportation funding issues. And a check in with Roger May about his photography project "Looking at Appalachia." 

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Infrastructure
9:08 pm
Mon July 14, 2014

Congressional Stalemate May Cause Construction Delays for W.Va. Roads

From left to right, West Virginia Department of Transportation Secretary Paul Mattox, Congressman Nick Rahall, U.S. Department of Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx and Sen. Jay Rockefeller.
Credit Ashton Marra / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

U.S. Department of Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx sat at a table with Senator Rockefeller, Congressman Nick Rahall and West Virginia DOT Secretary Paul Mattox in the main hall of the state Culture Center in Charleston.

He came to West Virginia to talk about infrastructure and the funding it will take to fix an aging system not just in West Virginia, but across the country. That funding, though, as Foxx said, is stuck in Washington.

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Election 2014
8:50 pm
Mon July 14, 2014

Ryan, Warren Campaign in W.Va. For Senate Candidates

Natalie Tennant and Sen. Elizabeth Warren take the stage at a rally in Shepherdstown.
Credit Liz McCormick / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

Two major Congressional players made stops in West Virginia Monday to rally around their respective party’s candidate for Senate.

The atmosphere in Shepherdstown was upbeat, in a word, at current Secretary of State Natalie Tennant’s rally as supporters chanted and cheered for the Democratic candidate. Tennant was joined by veteran Senator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts.

In the days leading up to the rally, Tennant’s Republican opponent bashed her for teaming up with an anti-coal Senator whose agenda the state GOP says hurts West Virginia.

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Environment
5:53 pm
Mon July 14, 2014

DEP Approves Stormwater Management Plan for Freedom Tank Demolition

Credit AP

The West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection has approved a stormwater management plan for the demolition of the Charleston Freedom Industries site. The tanks there were involved in the contamination of the drinking water for some 300,000 West Virginians in January.

According to the plan approved Monday, Freedom Industries contractors will place liners over the footprint of the tanks to prevent stormwater from unintentionally entering the ground.

Contractors will also halt the demolition process if more than two inches of rain falls within a six-hour period.

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Reconnecting McDowell
2:10 pm
Mon July 14, 2014

Attorney, Teacher & Student Say Reconnecting McDowell is Working

Emily Hicks also spoke during a press conference in West Virginia earlier this year.
Credit Ashton Marra / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

A West Virginia corporate attorney, a McDowell County teacher and a high school student traveled across the country to share the good they see coming from the Reconnecting McDowell project.

The three traveled to Los Angeles to speak at the American Federation of Teachers convention about the program they say has changed lives and given the community a new sense of optimism.

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West Virginia Morning
8:01 am
Mon July 14, 2014

Mountain Top Removal Mining Near Kanawha State Forest, Climate Change on Brook Trout & More

On West Virginia Morning, Ashton Marra reports from the Kanawha State Forest where some residents are concerned about a mountain top removal mine site close by.  A West Virginia scientistsis experimenting how an Appalachian fish will adapt to climate change and we’ll visit with 81 year old Tom Toliver who has been creating community gardens on Charleston’s west side.

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