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Hundreds rally against mountaintop removal coal mining

By: Tamara Evans Email
By: Tamara Evans Email

Protesters of mountaintop removal coal mining went to the state capitol Monday, for what they call the "I Love The Mountains Rally."

It comes after a weekend sit-in outside the governor's office, protesting the mining procedure.

Hundreds of people walked up Capitol Avenue in Frankfort, to the state capitol.

They carried signs and wore special shirts, to protest mountaintop removal.

Many of them say they believe there is another way to create energy.

They say the way it is being done now ruins streams, lands, and the mountains. Coal officials disagree.

"Extraction methods need to be improved, granted we've come a long way," Ceci Mitchell, a protester at the rally, said. "That doesn't mean we're doing it the right way. They're getting it the easy way. The way that's best for the coal companies and their share holders."

"They shouldn't be able to just destroy the beauty of this wonderful place where I live. It's my home," says Wesley Hammond, who is against mountain top removal coal mining.

"This is an opportunity to let our Congressman and Governor know how we feel about this. This is where our hearts are,"says Elaine Rall, who attended the rally.

Meanwhile, those on the other side of the debate say they aren't hurting the environment.

"I think what these folks are referring to is mountaintop removal of the 1970's, or what you call strip mining," Bill Bissett, president of the Kentucky Coal Association said. "When you look at 21st century mining, we're doing a much, much better job at protecting the earth, doing environmentally responsible mining, and again providing 93 percent of the electricity in the Commonwealth."

More than a dozen people against mountaintop removal coal mining took part in the sit-in outside the governor's office this weekend.

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