Thursday, August 4, 2011

Coal vs. Environment – Soledad O’Brien's Battle for Blair Mountain


This CNN documentary shows the intense struggle over mountaintop removal. Battle for Blair Mountain: Working in America, debuts on Sunday, August 14 at 8:00pm ET and PT, with a replay on Saturday, August 20.

Anchor and Special Correspondent Soledad O’Brien examines the fight over Spruce One, one of the largest mountaintop removal sites ever proposed in the U.S. When O’Brien’s team first arrived in Sharples, W.V., nearly everyone in Appalachia was waiting to see if the Environmental Protection Agency was going to allow Spruce One’s permit to proceed, citing Clean Water Act violations.

When O’Brien’s team first arrived in Sharples, W.V., nearly everyone in Appalachia was waiting to see if the Environmental Protection Agency was going to allow Spruce One’s permit to proceed, citing Clean Water Act violations.

Several groups were invested in the fight: coal miners who wanted to keep the jobs they’ve had for decades, the green activists who oppose all coal mining and a coalition of people who would like to see mountaintop removal replaced by less damaging mining practices. Influential people such as EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson, Senator Joseph Manchin (D-WV) and Robert Kennedy, Jr. had plenty to say about the outcome, too. O’Brien and her team tell the story from all sides.


 Additional reporting on the mountaintop removal debate and video excerpts from The Battle for Blair Mountain: Working in America can be found at cnn.com/inamerica.

CNN Student News is producing an Educator and Parent Guide for the documentary, which will include discussion questions and a learning activity. The guide will be available on CNNStudentNews.com prior to the debut of the documentary as a companion viewing aid and teaching tool.
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