Mar 192012
 

This Mingo County, W.Va. family’s well water was clean before the coal slurry injections began. Photo by Vivian Stockman, www.ohvec.org.

Coal Rush has its world premier March 29, 2012 at The Atlanta Film Festival. The documentary examines what happened when a few hundred people living in small communities in Mingo County, W. Va. took on the fourth-largest coal company in the United States.

If you have contacts in the Atlanta area, please encourage them to come out for the world premier:

Thursday, Mar 29, 2012 7:30 p.m.
Landmark Midtown Art Cinema
931 Monroe Dr NE # C212 Atlanta, GA 30308

The more audience members the screening garners, the more attention other festivals will pay to Coal Rush, and the that means more public education about what coal prep plant waste is doing to our southern mountain communities and how folks are standing up for their health and their future.

In Mingo County, folks came to believe that illnesses that were killing and sickening their family members and neighbors might not be acts of God, but instead, acts of corporate environmental wrongdoing. They accused Massey Energy of contaminating the well water of more than 700 people, after the coal company injected billions of gallons of toxic coal slurry into to old underground mines near their homes.

OVEC had been organizing with the Mingo County communities, and OVEC networked community leaders with the attorneys who met with residents and took up the case. Coal Rush follows the families involved in the case. As the organizing continued and the lawsuit unfolded, the residents celebrated a major victory along the way, the installation of city water lines to their communities — after a 13-year struggle.

About that victory, Rawl residents BI and Debbie Sammons said, “OVEC helped in every aspect of getting us water lines here. They helped in the planning, scheduling, making appointments at the capitol to make our needs known to the powers that be. They were instrumental in helping us to get the word out to the public, including the national outcry to make our needs known. We tried for 13 years on our own, but once we partnered with OVEC, people started paying attention. OVEC gave us expertise, help, and contacts to get us clean water here.”

OVEC looks forward to the success of Coal Rush. Please spread the word about the world premier.