I Love Mountains

Kentuckians for the Commonwealth have a campaign to let Governor Beshear know how we feel about so-called "contour mining."
Send a Valentine to Governor Beshear

Here in Louisville we use a lot of energy. We don’t think much about where it comes from. We may not even know about the coal-fired generators that keep our lights on and our furnaces roaring. We flip a switch. That’s about it. Ignorance is bliss, they say. But in this case, ignorance here in the Metro and elsewhere is contributing to a decades-long disaster.

There’s a lot more that we need to know about where some of that coal comes from. Right now, a group of concerned citizens are camping out in Gov. Beshear’s office in hopes of getting his attention on the issue of mountaintop removal, contour mining, strip mining, surface mining – whatever you care to call it – that’s been destroying Eastern Kentucky for half a century.

The celebrated Kentucky author Wendell Berry is among the couple of dozen concerned Kentuckians who have spent the weekend in the governor’s office to make their point that mountaintop removal must stop. They have a long list of reasons why banning surface mining is long overdue. The destruction of more than 2,000 miles of fresh water streams is an important one recently cited by the Environmental Protection Agency but contested by Kentucky officials and coal interests. The coal industry is in an alternate universe on this one. They have a powerful lobby that has been pushing their agenda to defeat regulation of strip mining all along.

After meeting with Gov. Beshear, Berry didn’t mince words. He once again made it clear that the coal industry position on surface mining has no logical standing and it is leaving Appalachian mountain areas in ruin.

So it appears that the sleep-over in Beshear’s office, the KFTC march on Frankfort on Valentine’s Day, and the campaign to send Valentines to Gov. Beshear may get state leaders to think more clearly about long overdue protection of the mountains where our fellow Kentuckians live, work and play. Let’s hope.

Organizers of the Valentines Day Rally in Frankfort will deliver “I Love Mountains” Valentine notes  to the governor. You’re encouraged to send your own (or use this downloadable version).  And don’t forget to turn out lights when they’re not needed, OK?

To find out more, go to Kentuckians For The Commonwealth Web pages.

And here’s a video interview with Berry shot during the weekend sit-in:

Grace. Peace. Bicycle Grease.

PS: Remember, every lane is a bike lane. Share the road.

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Enjoy the ride home.
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