WV Water Policy – We Won’t Be Silenced
As WV’s regular legislative session enters its final hours, the dust is beginning to settle and one thing is clear: polluters want to cover the truth and silence your concerns. A third bill that weakens water protections this session, SB 687 – the “coal bill”, is expected to pass. You did your part. You sent a total of 12,350 letters supporting clean water. We saw 51 people speak out for water during public hearings. We did our part. We provided 8 fact sheets and bill analysis to the public and legislators. We were included in more than 30 news stories and interviews. But ultimately more legislators chose narrow industry interests over the public interests.
Yesterday, we joined together with other groups to call our Legislature and Governor out for turning a deaf ear to science and citizen concerns. But just hours later, the House rejected an amendment to SB 687 which would have protected water. We’d like to thank Delegates Fleischauer, Lynch, Pushkin, White, Hornbuckle, Miley, Pyles, Isner, Moore, and Rowe for listening to West Virginians and voting for water. View press coverage here, here and here.
Today, as we look back over the legislative session, we’re frustrated and we’re disappointed. But we’re not giving up and we’re not going to be silenced. Next week, we’ll be sharing in depth analysis on what the results of this legislative session means for water in West Virginia and how, together, we will move forward.
Explore the Mononghela National Forest May 20-21
The weekend kicks off on Saturday, May 20, at our basecamp for the weekend, the Elk River Inn in beautiful Slatyfork, WV.
After check-in we’ll have interactive programs for folks of all ages. Learn about the natural wonder and beauty of West Virginia’s forests and rivers. Then join a Leave No Trace Master Educator for a training on how to leave only footprints when exploring the great outdoors. We’ll have an early BBQ dinner, then once the stars come out we’ll gather around a campfire.
field trips into the Monongahela National Forest. You’ll have the option to choose one of four excursions:
- Catch-and-release fly fishing;
- biking along the Cranberry River;
- an easy hike exploring the Highland Scenic Highway; or an
- advanced hike exploring the different habitats found in the Birthplace of Rivers.
Register for the Best of Birthplace of Rivers Weekend here. We’ll follow-up after you register with more information.
West Virginians Go To The Hill For Clean Water
A team of a dozen clean water advocates representing six West Virginia counties joined us on Capitol Hill on April 5 to meet with Congressional members and staffs to share stories on how federal funding has benefited watershed protection and restoration in the Mountain State. Chesapeake Bay Day on the Hill is organized annually by the Choose Clean Water Coalition, a network of more than 200 organizations from Bay states for which WV Rivers serves as WV’s state coordinator.
Fracking Permit Guide and Mountaineer Xpress Pipeline
Are you confused by the complicated permitting process required for shale gas development and it’s related infrastructure? That’s why we’ve created the Citizen’s Guide to Fracking Permits in West Virginia.
We’ll be holding a free webinar on the Citizen’s Guide on April 12 with our partner, Downstream Strategies. Learn about the Guide and how it can help you submit meaningful comments to the WVDEP. Register for the webinar here.