April 11, 2001 |
Like larger-than-life tombstones, the black piles of coal waste on the denuded hillsides that pock northeastern Pennsylvania mark the devastation left by decades of mining. But John W. Rich Jr., entrepreneur and partial heir to a family coal fortune, says his company and its partners will change all that for Schuylkill County, and perhaps for other coal regions across the country. Rich's company, Waste Management & Processors Inc., and its corporate partners are racing to become the first in the United States to build and operate a full-scale, coal-to-liquid-fuel facility.
September 19, 2016 |
WAYNESBURG, Pa. - Jim Popielarcheck's dad was a coal miner for 40 years, and he followed the old man underground. In turn, when it was time, his son J.W. descended into the earth. That's been the story for generations in Greene County, a piece of Appalachia in the farthest southwest corner of Pennsylvania, one of the biggest coal-producing counties in the nation, a point of blue-collar pride. But in a place where houses and settlements cling to the sides of mountains, mist rising from the hollers, the way of life coal has provided, and even the promise of America itself, can feel precarious here in the final weeks before the nation elects a new president.
April 22, 2016
By John Hanger Bernie Sanders is airing a new television advertisement titled "Ban Fracking Everywhere," a siren song for the 51 percent of Americans who don't support shale-gas production. But Sanders' fracking ban would paradoxically increase pollution and cause devastating utility bill increases for 400,000 Philadelphians with incomes near or below the poverty line. As concerns about fracking mount, many believe the senator when he thunders that a ban is the right thing to do. In an ideal world, it would be, because gas drilling is an industrial process that cannot be done without causing some damage to the environment.
July 20, 1988 |
The coal industry isn't cheering the drought, but it sees one positive side to the dry, hot conditions afflicting the nation this summer. That weather will contribute to record levels of coal production and consumption in 1988, the National Coal Association said yesterday. In its midyear forecast, the association said U.S. miners will produce 926 million tons of coal this year, up from 917 million in 1987. Coal consumption, including exports, is expected to reach 932 million tons, 15 million more than last year.
June 15, 2010 |
Government is not especially good at picking winners in the free market, including in the energy sector. Despite a lot of hoopla and subsidies, for example, corn-based ethanol has proven for the most part to be a nonstarter. On the other hand, entrepreneurs have discovered that recycled cooking oil can be used to fuel vehicles, and many major energy companies are looking at algae as a potential alternative-energy resource. Today, we have state and federal subsidies being poured into solar and wind power, although these may not turn out to be the most practical options (certainly not in every region of the country)
November 16, 1986
Listening to his message, it might have been easy to figure Edward B. Leisenring Jr. to be some out-of-place environmentalist as he addressed the Virginia Coal Council recently. He was telling his audience to get behind passage of an acid-rain control bill, legislation that the industry has vigorously opposed in past years. Edward Leisenring isn't some mouthpiece for environmentalists, however. He is the chairman of Westmoreland Coal Co., based in Philadelphia, and that's what makes his message to Eastern coal executives particularly interesting.
July 8, 1993 |
Struggling Westmoreland Coal Co. yesterday lauded an agreement it reached last week with the United Mine Workers of America, saying the new contract would reduce costs for small coal companies and increase competitiveness while protecting union jobs. The Philadelphia mining firm and union representatives hailed the agreement with such enthusiasm that, given the history of labor relations in the coal industry, it was like hearing the Hatfields praise the McCoys. "This contract provides a unique opportunity for labor and management to join in making Westmoreland competitive and returning the company to profitability," said Westmoreland president Christopher K. Seglem.
October 19, 1992 |
LONDON COAL FIRES CRISIS FOR BRITISH PM Prime Minister John Major yesterday called an emergency cabinet meeting for today after plans to close down more than half of Britain's coal industry blew up into the worst crisis of his leadership. The meeting will focus on an escalating revolt in the Conservative Party over plans unveiled last week to ax 31 of state-owned British Coal's 50 pits with the loss of 30,000 miners' jobs. An irony of the furor over Major's plan to shut down the coal mines is that the miners have found an ardent ally in Winston Churchill.
February 19, 2010
"MY NAME IS CHARLOTTE," the ad begins. "I work for Sallie Mae to help families go to college and I agree with President Obama. One job lost is too many - especially in Pennsylvania. But my job could be lost because Congress is about to vote on another bill . . . putting Washington in charge of student loans instead of letting local employees do the job. That would cost Pennsylvania hundreds of jobs - maybe even thousands. Visit ProtectPennsylvaniaJobs.com. We're sympathetic to people facing job loss.
November 4, 1986 |
On the last day of his re-election campaign, U.S. Sen. Arlen Specter crisscrossed the state yesterday in a small plane, making a final pitch to voters in the major media markets through a series of political rallies, endorsements and news conferences. Specter and his wife, City Councilwoman Joan Specter, appeared for rallies at the front gate of the Philadelphia Naval Shipyard in South Philadelphia and in the ornate Capitol Rotunda in Harrisburg. They also visited employees at a manufacturing plant in Erie, and Specter received an endorsement from United Miners Workers president Richard Trumka during a news conference in Pittsburgh.