Supporters travel to DC to see Judy Bonds receive the
Photos by Vivian Stockman
30 supporters join Judy for DC ceremony
A group of about 30 coalfield residents and activists traveled to Washington,
DC to help Coal River Mountain Watch's Judy
Bonds celebrate winning the 2003 Goldman Environmental Prize for North
America. Many an eye moistened during the moving ceremony,
held at the National Geographic Society's Grosvenor Auditorium. We
are so proud of you, Judy!
True to form, we activists couldn't resist
a visit to the offices of West Virginia's Senators Byrd and Rockefeller.
We thanked Senator Byrd for publicly stating that the National
Academy of Sciences recommendations on coal sludge impoundments
should be implemented. Those recommendations include identifying alternatives
to coal sludge impoundments and identifying ways to eliminate and reduce
the "need" for these impoundments. We also mentioned our
concerns over mountaintop-removal-related flooding of the coalfields.
Rockefeller's aide didn't surprise us when he assured us that the Senator
supports "mountaintop mining," despite supposedly being concerned
about the flooding of the coalfields.
A few folks also visited
some House Republicans who are likely to support the Clean Water
Protection Act of 2003, a bipartisan bill that would stop coal companies
from dumping our former mountains into our streams. The bill would
also prevent industries from dumping all manner of wastes into our
Judy's award and the Clean Water
Protection Act will help us keep up the pressure on those who would
remove every coal bearing mountain in southern West Virginia.
The crew from West Virginia on Capitol Hill.
We meet up with Judy (center) in a Senate Office Building.
Judy discusses mountaintop removal with various Senator's aides.
Larry Maynard informs Senators' aides about the Massey Energy coal
sludge impoundment being built above his hometown of Delbarton, W. Va.
Bob Gates (to the right of the TV) discusses his film "Mucked,"
which is about the 2001 and 2002 floods, with John Richards
(right of Gates), who is one of Senator Rockefeller's aides.
In the auditorium.
Goldman made a short video about each award winner, telling a bit
about the environmental problems they work to overcome. Judy's
video includes shots of blasting at mountaintop removal operations.
"Dustbuster" Pauline Canterberry was in Judy's video, too.
Judy on the big screen.
Judy and some of her fellow award winners.