Quantcast
Environmental News for a Healthier Planet and Life

Public Interest Groups Deliver Petition Requesting to Decharter Massey Energy

Energy
Public Interest Groups Deliver Petition Requesting to Decharter Massey Energy

Free Speech For People

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.

Susanna Pershern / Submerged Resources Center/ National Park Service / public domain

By Melissa Gaskill

Two decades ago scientists and volunteers along the Virginia coast started tossing seagrass seeds into barren seaside lagoons. Disease and an intense hurricane had wiped out the plants in the 1930s, and no nearby meadows could serve as a naturally dispersing source of seeds to bring them back.

Read More Show Less

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

Fridays for Future climate activists demonstrate in Bonn, Germany on Sept. 25, 2020. Roberto Pfeil / picture alliance via Getty Images

Carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere hit a new record in 2019 and have continued climbing this year, despite lockdowns and other measures to curb the pandemic, the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) said on Monday, citing preliminary data.

Read More Show Less

Trending

The Argentine black-and-white tegu is an invasive species that can reach four-feet long. Mark Newman / Getty Images

These black-and-white lizards could be the punchline of a joke, except the situation is no laughing matter.

Read More Show Less
Smoke covers the skies over downtown Portland, Oregon, on Sept. 9, 2020. Diego Diaz / Icon Sportswire

By Isabella Garcia

September in Portland, Oregon, usually brings a slight chill to the air and an orange tinge to the leaves. This year, it brought smoke so thick it burned your throat and made your eyes strain to see more than 20 feet in front of you.

Read More Show Less
A rare rusty-spotted cat is spotted in the wild in 2015. David V. Raju / Wikimedia Commons / CC by 4.0

Misunderstanding the needs of how to protect three rare cat species in Southeast Asia may be a driving factor in their extinction, according to a recent study.

Read More Show Less