Watch 30 Years of Mountaintop Removal Spread Across Appalachia

The recent downturn in coal mining has slowed its spread, but mountaintop removal mining has already reached across the coalfields over the past 30 years.

Using a Google app called Timelapse, you can observe the changes in the central Appalachian coalfields, especially southern West Virginia and eastern Kentucky.

And here's a close-up of the Hobet Mine in Boone and Lincoln Counties, W.Va.

Timelapse is a global, zoomable video that lets you see how the Earth has changed over the past 32 years. It is made from 33 cloud-free annual mosaics, one for each year from 1984 to 2016, which are made interactively explorable by Carnegie Mellon University CREATE Lab's Time Machine library, a technology for creating and viewing zoomable and pannable timelapses over space and time.

Hobet mine in Lincoln and Boone Counties, W.Va.