Black lung disease in both surface and underground coal miners is getting worse and being under diagnosed. That's the word from the Tug River Black Lung Clinic in Gary, McDowell County. The clinic and its leading physician Dr. Randy Forehand was profiled in a recent investigation by NPR into the rise of black lung disease in coal miners. On Monday, the clinic will hold an event to assist miners with applying for federal black lung benefits. The event is being held from 10 am to 4 pm at the new River View High School in Bradshaw.
West Virginia was in the running for a big natural gas cracker plant that the Shell Oil Company wants to build. The company selected a site in Beaver County, Pennsylvania -- not far from the West Virginia border instead. Governor Tomblin and economic development officials are still looking at large cracker plants locating here. But what do these plants do exactly and how do they effect the environment? How may those projects impact air quality for Pennsylvania?
War, West Virginia is
often linked with its designation as the state’s most-southern town. But this
summer the community of 1000 residents is in the news for the gruesome murder
of its mayor. Seventy-two-year old
Thomas Hatcher was found dead in his home last month. Police say Hatcher’s
daughter-in-law and her brother killed the elderly McDowell County
native for $1100 he kept hidden in the home – money they stole to buy drugs. Residents
describe how wide-spread drug addiction and drug–related crimes are throughout
the region. As we continue our series McDowell County: Resilience and
Rebirth, Suzanne Higgins visits War and a group of residents who despite
fearing the drug epidemic, continue to work tirelessly for change and community
The Roman Catholic
missionary who founded the Christian Appalachian Project passed away overnight early Thursday. Since World War II, Monsignor Ralph
Beiting served the people of eastern Kentucky through a series of social
service programs. KPR's Charles Compton, who knew the Catholic priest, has
Next Saturday in Fayette County, West Virginia there will be a party to celebrate the release of a new music CD called Blair Pathways. It’s a multi-media project focused on telling the story of West Virginia’s Mine Wars through historic Appalachian music. The CD builds a narrative of the Mine Wars between 1900-1921 through a diversity of traditional songs and tunes. Here’s some examples of the music along with the words of many who recall the history of Blair Mountain. (Blair Pathways is produced by Saro Lynch-Thomason.)
Since the 2010 release of the film Gasland (pictured), a slew of documentaries about shale gas development have been produced. Many oppose the gas development. But as The Allegheny Front’s Reid Frazier found, the gas industry itself has taken a page from the anti-fracking movement. It’s picked up the movie camera as its latest tool in the battle for the public’s hearts and minds when it comes to fracking.