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RE: [RC] re: RC] Bryce Canyon 5 day - Karen - Cindy Stafford

Sounds lovely Truman!  How wonderful that your family was able to keep the land.
I remember what you described at the mine I worked at - the 'old' pre-reclamation part of the mine looked very different from the new part.  Those slurry pits were nasty.  Was not fun trudging the edges of a slurry pit trying to take survey shots.  In  january.  In the freezing weather.  In the frozen slurry. 
who is loving her desk job today :)

Date: Wed, 9 Dec 2009 15:39:48 -0500
From: tprevatt@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx
To: cjstaf@xxxxxxx; ridecamp@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: Re: [RC] re: RC] Bryce Canyon 5 day - Karen

I grew up in the strip mining belt of Western KY back before there was any regulation. Western KY is in a coal rich area know as the Illinois Basin. Dig a pit, take the coal, walk away. There are many areas of Western KY that still to this day look like a moon scape dotted with old stripper pits. The only thing that will grow there is scrub oaks, rattle snakes and copperheads. Then came the regulation that required reclamation. That meant they filled as best they could the pits and then walked away. However, the top soil was lost in the mining process and the land is forever worthless for much of anything except maybe scrub oaks, rattle snakes and copperheads.

We have coal under the family farm. I remember the day someone from Mr. Peabody's Coal Company came to the house to talk to my Grandfather about leasing some land for mining. He went on about reclaiming the land and handed my Grandfather a contract to sign. My Grandfather told him he'd look it over and to come back in a week.

My Grandfather had his lawyer draw up his own contract which was very specific on the reclamation of the land, requiring a large payment be put into escrow to insure the reclamation met the specifications of the contract. Of course Mr. Peabody's Coal Company would not sign it and we never heard from them again.

Today I think I can speak to the three people who now own and run the farm, me, my sister and my cousin. There will be no strip mining on our land - no way no how. The farm is not too far from a small town in Muhlenberg County  called Paradise made famous by John Prine in a song by the same name. The lyrics of the song ring pretty true. http://www.cowboylyrics.com/lyrics/prine-john/paradise-10845.html


Cindy Stafford wrote:

I interned at a strip mine in college eons ago before I got my engineering degree.  What I came away with is learning that strip mines can effect greater areas than just the ground being excavated.  Water quality can be affected (we had monitoring wells miles away), there can be be noise impacts (from the excavating equipment, haul trucks and blasting), vibration impacts (from the blasting), air quality impacts (dust from the haul roads and from the blasting) and I imagine secondary impacts to the ecosystem, depending on the area being disturbed.  And some strip mine operations don't always follow the rules and have nifty ways of hiding stuff from the inspectors, with affects to the water quality and ecosystem as a result.
Not arguing for or against it, just some food for thought in case you enjoy the quiet nearby, the clean water downstream, or the fresh air alongside and want to preserve it
Cindy (who plans highways and coordinates the environmental studies for them....)
Karen wrote:


“The surest way to corrupt a youth is to instruct him to hold in higher esteem those who think alike than those who think differently.”  Friedrich Nietzsche

[RC] re: RC] Bryce Canyon 5 day - Karen, Cindy Stafford
Re: [RC] re: RC] Bryce Canyon 5 day - Karen, Truman Prevatt