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Wednesday, July 20, 2005

John Roberts Supports Mountain Top Removal In West Virginia

Posted by Frankie at 7/20/2005 12:01:00 AM

John G. Roberts Jr., along with being Anti-Choice, Anti-Civil Rights, Anti-Gay, Pro-Payer In School, this Republican is also Anti-Environment. In 2001, then private attorney Roberts coauthored an amicus brief that argued against the citizens in West Virginia who were adversely effected by mountain top removal.
As a lawyer in private practice, Mr. Roberts has also represented large corporate interests opposing environmental controls. He submitted an amicus brief on behalf of the National Mining Association in the recent case Bragg v. West Virginia Coal Association. In this case, a three-judge panel of the Fourth Circuit reversed a district court ruling that had stopped the practice of "mountaintop removal" in the state of West Virginia. Citizens of West Virginia who were adversely affected by the practice had sued the state, claiming damage to both their homes and the surrounding area generally. [NOTE: Rivers that were coming back to life have become clogged with toxic sludge, groundwater quality has been adversely affected, and environmental-genus illnesses in these areas are now on the increase.] Three Republican appointees -- Judges Niemeyer, Luttig, and Williams -- held that West Virginia's issuance of permits to mining companies to extract coal by blasting the tops off of mountains and depositing the debris in nearby valleys and streams did not violate the 1977 Federal Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act. [NOTE: This would have been an absolutely laughable decision if the human and environmental results of it had not been so tragic.] This decision was greeted with great dismay by environmental groups. In another case, Roberts represented one of several intervenors in a case challenging the EPA's promulgation of rules to reduce nitrogen oxide emissions
Roberts Coauthored Amicus Brief in Support of Mountain Top Removal.
"Another Bush judicial appointee with experience representing the mining industry is John G. Roberts, Jr., a former colleague of George Miller's at the Hogan & Hartson law and lobbying firm. Roberts was one of the co-authors of Miller's amicus brief on behalf of the National Mining Association's challenge to the government ban on mountaintop removal." While serving on the DC. Circuit Court Roberts ruled against environmentalist who were pushing for stricter government regulation of copper smelters." [Center for Investigative Reporting, 10/12/04]
Though Bush commented,
"He has a good heart... loves his country, loves his family"
Just not the families who live in the mountains of West Virginia.

Coal companies who practice "Moutaintop Removal":

Arch Coal Inc.

National Coal Corporation
(leading the charge for destruction in TN)

Crestview Capital Funds
(an institutional investor in NCC)

Cunningham & Company
(a public relations firm working for NCC)

Massey Energy
(destroyer of mountains, waterways and communities in WV and KY; also viciously anti-union, owned by Republican Don Blankenship who is ant-public education)

West Virginia Coal Association
(John Roberts former employer)

Friends of Coal
(A fake Republican front group for Massey Energy endorsed by Republican Don Nehlen who gives out these "Friends of Coal" bumper stickers at events within West Virginia)

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