Definitions for mountaintop removal

This page provides all possible meanings and translations of the word mountaintop removal


  1. mountaintop removal(Noun)

    A method of coal mining which involves stripping a mountain bare of vegetation, blasting off the top of the mountain with explosives, and storing the copious waste in nearby valleys and streams.


  1. Mountaintop removal mining

    Mountaintop removal mining, also known as mountaintop mining, is a form of surface mining that involves the mining of the summit or summit ridge of a mountain. Coal seams are extracted from a mountain by removing the land, or overburden, above the seams. This method of coal mining is conducted in the Appalachian Mountains in the eastern United States. Explosives are used to remove up to 400 vertical feet of mountain to expose underlying coal seams. Excess rock and soil laden with toxic mining byproducts are often dumped into nearby valleys, in what are called "holler fills" or "valley fills." Less expensive to execute and requiring fewer employees, mountaintop removal mining began in Appalachia in the 1970s as an extension of conventional strip mining techniques. It is primarily occurring in Kentucky, West Virginia, Virginia, and Tennessee. Peer-reviewed studies show that mountaintop mining has serious environmental impacts, including loss of biodiversity and toxification of watersheds, that mitigation practices cannot successfully address. There are also adverse human health impacts which result from contact with affected streams or exposure to airborne toxins and dust.


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