Mountaintop Removal Mining
Mountaintop Removal mining (MTR) has become the preferred method for extracting coal in North America. This technique involves deforesting, exploding and clearing away the top layer of mountains in order to harvest coal from the seams buried underneath. This method is extremely labor efficient, meaning far fewer miners are required to extract the same amount of coal from year to year. 1970 was the year that the very first MTR Site came into the world, at Bullpush Mountain in Fayette County, West Virginia. Since then, over 15, 094 jobs have been shed from the West Virginia surface mining industry.
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Mountaintop Removal Mining Photographs
All photography and captions © J. Henry Fair