Our Top Concerns
1. Economic Impacts and Need – While touted as economic development, we fear that the road will bypass existing economic centers eliminating through traffic, and putting a nail the coffin for these communities’ economic futures. These fears are bolstered by studies that show the ineffectiveness of large road projects in bringing economic development to rural communities. The Appalachian Regional Commission and others suggest more cost effective strategies for economic development in distressed counties like ours.
2. Eminent Domain – The new route proposed by Alpha Natural Resources requires the condemnation by eminent domain of large tracts of land, which they will profit from through the extraction of coal reserves. Taking private land for corporate profit, and no public value, for dubious public value, is an affront to liberty.
3. Tax-payer dollars for Corporate Profit– The complete funding for this expensive project has always been in doubt and fluctuation depending on the whims of the political environment, as have the ultimate final costs. Furthermore, the lack of transparency due to the Public Private Partnership approach gives us concern that millions of tax-payer dollars will be wasted, and the project never brought to completion.
4. Water Quality Impacts – The current alignment of the CFX Section 2 increases the direct stream impacts of the project from 4 miles to more than 12. Many of our streams are already impaired by the kind of pollution this would entail, damaging our valuable natural resources, and further limiting our area’s potential for adventure tourism.
5. Community Health Impacts – Seeing the negative health and well-being effects of increased mountaintop mining and strip mining to nearby communities, we are seriously concerned that the surface mining associated with the CFX will have similar impacts on the communities adjacent to the CFX route.
The lack of public comment and involvement in the Environmental Asessment for the Pound Bypass sections, the lack of agency consultation on the Section 2 EA, and the vast changes made to the route between the original and current alignments lead us to believe that regulations meant to protect US Citizens are being avoided in order to move this project forward. All together, these concerns force us to request that a supplemental EIS be completed for the CFX.