Blackwaters by Jean Ritchie
Coal mining has left a legacy of pollution and exploitation of labor in central Appalachia. Acid mine drainage destroys aquatic life and makes water unfit for human consumption. In some places black sludge can pour from the kitchen tap and in other areas tremendous amounts of iron causes streams to run red (in West Virginia alone over 500 streams are impaired by mine drainage).
The coal industry continues to devastate the environment - blowing up mountaintops and scarring the landscape in the process - while worker residents remain among the poorest in North America.
The continuing story of extracting the world's dirtiest fuel: