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Melissa Waage’s Blog

Watch tonight: Don Blankenship vs. Bobby Kennedy

Melissa Waage

Posted January 21, 2010 in Health and the Environment, Saving Wildlife and Wild Places, Solving Global Warming

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Hello from beautiful Charleston, West Virginia! Massey Energy CEO Don Blankenship and Bobby Kennedy face off again tonight at the University of Charleston's Forum on the Future of Energy and I'll be there livetweeting the event right here. You can also watch live video of the debate beginning at 6:15 pm, Eastern time. This debate is sure to be spirited and couldn't come at a more important time to discuss mountaintop removal mining in Appalachia, in which Massey, of course, is a key player.

Last fall, the Obama administration took initial steps towards limiting mountaintop removal when the Department of Interior announced it would begin to review state-issued surface mining permits and at least begin to explore tightened restrictions on dumping mine waste into streams. Then, last month, a dozen leading scientists published a bombshell study on the effects of mountaintop removal, actually calling for an end to the practice. Yet the EPA's just approved yet another mountaintop removal permit in West Virginia, and the timeline for the Interior Department actually proposing stronger dumping regulations is unclear. 

I, for one, am expecting quite a show as Blankenship and Kennedy duke it out (verbally) tonight.  So tune in via Twitter and video tonight for the play-by-play, and watch Switchboard tomorrow for Rob Perks' take on the debate. 

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Switchboard is the staff blog of the Natural Resources Defense Council, the nation’s most effective environmental group. For more about our work, including in-depth policy documents, action alerts and ways you can contribute, visit NRDC.org.

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