Public Interest Groups Deliver Petition Requesting to Decharter Massey Energy
Public interest groups met Sept. 16 with Delaware Attorney General Beau Biden’s office to discuss their request to revoke Massey Energy’s corporate charter. The groups cited Massey’s history of reckless behavior, including its culpability in the 2010 Upper Big Branch mine disaster, in which 29 miners were killed.
The groups—Free Speech For People, Appalachian Voices and Rainforest Action Network—delivered a petition with 35,000 citizens’ names calling for Massey’s corporate charter to be revoked.
“Having a corporate charter is a privilege, not a right,” said Jeff Clements, co-founder and general counsel for Free Speech For People. “Delaware, as with other states, reserves the right to revoke or forfeit state corporate charters when they are abused or misused, as in cases of repeated unlawful conduct. Massey Energy has repeatedly demonstrated that it should not be entrusted with a corporation charter.”
Following the Upper Big Branch mine disaster, then West Virginia Governor Joe Manchin appointed an independent investigation panel to determine the cause of the explosion, and to find impartial facts that would help prevent similar disasters in the future. The panel, led by former federal Assistant Secretary for Mine Safety and Health J. Davitt McAteer, found that Massey repeatedly placed profits ahead of worker safety and compliance with the law, and has a long history of criminal and civil violations. The groups cite the report as describing “a shocking corporate culture of illegality.”
“I have seen how Massey Energy has demonstrated a gross disregard for workers and communities in Central Appalachia by systemically ignoring mine safety regulations as well as basic clean air and clean water laws,” said Willa Coffey Mays, executive director of Appalachian Voices. “Bad actors like Massey should not be afforded the same privileges as businesses that play by the rules.”
“Massey cannot merge its way out of accountability for its corporate misconduct,” said Clements, addressing the recent merger between Massey Energy and Alpha Natural Resources. The groups pointed out that Massey Energy’s charter still exists despite the merger as a wholly-owned subsidiary of Alpha Natural Resources.
Click here to listen to Robert F. Kennedy, Jr.'s participation in a call to revoke Massey Energy's corporate charter.
For more information, click here.
People across New England witnessed a dramatic celestial event Sunday night.
EcoWatch Daily Newsletter
By David Reichmuth
Over the last month, I've seen a number of opinion articles attacking electric vehicles (EVs). Sadly, this comes as no surprise: now that the Biden administration is introducing federal policies to accelerate the roll out of electric vehicles, we were bound to see a reaction from those that oppose reducing climate changing emissions and petroleum use.
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The Great Trail in Canada is recognized as the world's longest recreational trail for hiking, biking, and cross-country skiing. Created by the Trans Canada Trail (TCT) and various partners, The Great Trail consists of a series of smaller, interconnected routes that stretch from St. John's to Vancouver and even into the Yukon and Northwest Territories. It took nearly 25 years to connect the 27,000 kilometers of greenway in ways that were safe and accessible to hikers. Now, thanks to a new partnership with the Canadian Paralympic Committee and AccessNow, the TCT is increasing accessibility throughout The Great Trail for people with disabilities.
Trans Canada Trail and AccessNow partnership for AccessOutdoors / Trails for All project. Mapping day at Stanley Park Seawall in Vancouver, British Columbia with Richard Peter. Alexa Fernando<p>This partnership also comes at a time when access to outdoor recreation is more important to Canadian citizens than ever. <a href="https://www150.statcan.gc.ca/n1/daily-quotidien/200527/dq200527b-eng.htm" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Studies from the spring of 2020</a> indicate that Canadian's <a href="https://www.bnnbloomberg.ca/moneytalk-mental-health-during-covid-19-1.1567633" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">mental health has worsened</a> since the onset of social distancing protocols due to COVID-19. </p><p>The <a href="https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/coronavirus/in-depth/safe-activities-during-covid19/art-20489385" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Mayo Clinic</a> lists hiking, biking, and skiing as safe activities during COVID-19. Their website explains, "When you're outside, fresh air is constantly moving, dispersing these droplets. So you're less likely to breathe in enough of the respiratory droplets containing the virus that causes COVID-19 to become infected."</p><p>TCT leadership took this into consideration when embarking on the accessibility project. McMahon explains that there has never been a more important time to bring accessibility to the great outdoors: "Canadians have told us that during these difficult times, they value access to natural spaces to stay active, take care of their mental health, and socially connect with others while respecting physical distancing and public health directives. This partnership is incredibly important especially now as trails have become a lifeline for Canadians."</p><p>Together, these organizations are paving the way for better physical and mental health among all Canadians. To learn more about the TCT's mission and initiatives, check out their <a href="https://thegreattrail.ca/stories/" target="_blank">trail stories</a> and <a href="https://thegreattrail.ca/wp-content/uploads/2021/01/TCT_2020-Donor-Impact-Report_EN_8.5x14-web.pdf" target="_blank">2020 Impact Report</a>.</p>