Obama’s EPA approves 42 of 48 mountain top destruction permits.

Did Obama throw Appalachia’s mountaintops under the bulldozers? Yes.

Same thing with Appalachian valleys.

At Coal Tattoo, Ken Ward Jr. shares this from EPA Director Lisa Jackson‘s press secretary:

…."We have concluded, under the law, that six projects of an initial 48 permits EPA reviewed, will not proceed unless adverse environmental impacts are further reduced. We will continue to follow the law and use the best science as we quickly and thoroughly evaluate over 150 pending applications to reduce harmful environmental impacts.”

“EPA decided not to provide additional comments on the remaining 42 permits after consideration of the nature and extent of project impacts. 28 of the projects have two or fewer valley fills. Eleven have no valley fills at all. None have more than six.

Gee, "only" 31 of the 48 approved permits fill valleys. Of those 31, 28 have two or fewer fills: so that’s as many as 56 filled valleys. The remaining three approved each fill fewer than six: so that’s as many as 15 filled valleys.

Out of 48 permits Obama’s EPA considered, they’ve OK’d filling up to seventy-one valleys. But wait, there’s more.

Obama’s EPA has nearly 150 permits left to review. At the rate they’ve been going, they’ll be rubber-stamping enough Bushie permits to fill another two hundred and thirteen valleys.

Grand total just from this batch of permits? 284 ancient valleys destroyed forever. Homes, communities, farms, lives: destroyed forever.

Changes we can remember? If folks do nothing, perhaps. Across Appalachia, residents and their supporters are doing something – a whole lotta something. Litigating, organizing, and sitting and walking with their neighbors and friends. Organizations like Mountain Justice Summer use non-violent civil disobedience as one of many tools in keeping the mountains tall, the hollows deep, and the people on their land.

Looks like the Mountain Justice Summer and other local campaigns as well as a whole lotta enviro attorneys will need help. Hope they get it. The more coal we burn, the faster we’ll bring hell upon today’s 10 year olds.