Updates from West Virginia on Jim Hansen's protest and debate

Our WUWT correspondent (and surfacestations.org volunteer surveyor) Michael Caplinger reports in.

Marsh Fork aerial view

Marsh Fork Elementary and the coal operation nearby. More here at WV Public Broadcasting. Media coverage so far has been light. – Anthony

Mike updates us from WV:

As of 10:30 am here I have not heard exactly when the protest will be happening today, and they apparently have not happened yet. They may not happen at the strip site itself (with drag lines, etc), but near (and at) a local school which has been having a standoff for some time about the construction of a new coal storage silo very close to the school.  That is where they will also have the debate I believe (could be wrong though).

Here’s full tilt AGW side (with Blankenship video, etc) at www.Climatesciencewatch.org, Dr. James Hansen agrees to debate a major coal mining company CEO in West Virginia http://www.climatesciencewatch.org/index.php/csw/details/hansen_to_debate_coal_CEO/

Here’s a WV NPR story..Daryl Hannah will be there…yippee: http://www.wvpubcast.org/newsarticle.aspx?id=10131 I like the quotes:

“Tuesday’s protest is happening just days before a Congressional hearing titled, “The Impacts of Mountaintop Removal Mining on Water Quality in Appalachia.” The hearing is scheduled for Thursday before the Water and Wildlife subcommittee of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee.  Hansen has accepted Massey Energy CEO Don Blankenship’s challenge to a debate about mountaintop removal.  The debate is tentatively scheduled for Wednesday, June 24. Hansen says he will talk with or without Blankenship.Hansen is inviting the public to hear his speech. The place and time are still in the works.”

Here’s a detailed story on Daily Kos from early this morning,  Dr. James Hansen agrees to debate a major coal mining company CEO in West Virginia http://www.dailykos.com/story/2009/6/23/71241/4424 It has the letter from Hansen to Blankenship, etc.

Here’s the latest news (an AP story) from the Charleston Daily Mail, from early this morning  “Activists plan protest at Massey coal plant”

http://dailymail.com/News/200906230127

Here’s this morning’s Charleston Gazette. Not too much new but planning information.  “Climate scientist Hansen agrees to debate Massey’s Blankenship” http://www.wvgazette.com/News/200906220554

Here is a 5-day old story on last week’s arrests, in the Coal Valley News, which is the Boone County (local) newspaper.  They should have a new article soon.  The previous group of 14 protesting here in WV (about 2 weeks ago), actually spent a day or two in jail as they could not come up with the bail.

http://www.coalvalleynews.com/pages/full_story?article-Breaking%20News-%20Protestors%20scale%20dragline%20in%20Boone%20County%20in%20protest%20of%20mountain%20top%20removal%20mining%20=&page_label=home&id=2751375-Breaking+News-+Protestors+scale+dragline+in+Boone+County+in+protest+of+mountain+top+removal+mining&widget=push&instance=secondary_news_left_column&open=&

Something interesting…“Ky. man pleads guilty in fake John Amos plant bomb threat”  also in today’s Charleston Gazette (also the Metro News site) is a story about a worker at the John Amos Power Plant (one of the bigger coal fired plants in the East, near Charleston, and actually nearer the Winfield Lock and Dam) carrying out a bomb threat about a year ago.  Last year there was a string of bomb threats, and this fellow was arrested for dong a least one (by leaving a note and then reporting it) “to get off work early”. There were about 8 other bomb threats but he was not charged on those. He was charged with a felony and pleaded guilty today.  If only he would have just said he was an environmentalists protesting the plant, James Hansen would be there defending him, and who know, may have escaped the charge.  These threats happened around the time Hansen was in Britain I’ believe testifying about plant protests there.

http://www.wvgazette.com/News/200906230164

http://www.wvmetronews.com/index.cfm?func=displayfullstory&storyid=30964

MC

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Douglas DC
June 23, 2009 8:23 am

Having West Virgina roots Hansen’s horde is messin’ where they should’nt
be a messin’…

don't tarp me bro
June 23, 2009 8:31 am

It is ironic how tight Hansen was with Enron in Enron’s formative years. [snip]

don't tarp me bro
June 23, 2009 8:46 am

http://masterresource.org/?p=2559
Enron is Exhibit A against Waxman/Markey’s cap-and-trade proposal. Enron was poised to make money coming and going by being the nation’s and the world’s largest market-maker in CO2 permits, and the “smartest guys in the room” were ready to game and game for incremental dollars (remember California?). Enron’s business model, in retrospect, had to do with regulatory complexity, as I note in the introduction to my book Capitalism at Work. Enron gamed the highly prescriptive accounting rules (GAAP), tax system (the corporate tax division was actually a profit center as told in an exposé in the Washington Post.
http://powerandcontrol.blogspot.com/2007/10/more-enron-and-carbon-trading-hansen.html
I recently wrote an article on Enron and Carbon Trading. Here is another bit excerpted from a link provided in Enron and Carbon Trading.
Enron commissioned its own internal study of global warming science. It turned out to be largely in agreement with the same scientists that Enron was trying to shut up. After considering all of the inconsistencies in climate science, the report concluded: “The very real possibility is that the great climate alarm could be a false alarm. The anthropogenic warming could well be less than thought and favorably distributed.”
One of Enron’s major consultants in that study was NASA scientist James Hansen, who started the whole global warming mess in 1988 with his bombastic congressional testimony. Recently he published a paper in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences predicting exactly the same inconsequential amount of warming in the next 50 years as the scientists that Enron wanted to gag.
Hansen was tight with Enron. Hansen is just another con man with a Government business card.
ElPaso, Enron, Dynegy and two others were highly active in the enron trading scandels. some of california’s energy waste in terms of dollars was from the manipulation of energy markets and trading. Hansen was a dandy sock puppet for this. Hansen isn’t into this from a science standpoint. He is in it from a nostalgic standpoint and the fun and influence Enron caste on him. Those were his good old days.

Merrick
June 23, 2009 8:53 am

Miami is reported a new record heat and Ft. Lauderdale is reporting a record tie – 100 degrees F. Watt’s the story on those NWS sites?

Ian L. McQueen
June 23, 2009 8:56 am

Anthony-
In title: “Virginia”, not “Virgina”.
IM
[Reply: Fixed, thanks. ~ dbstealey, moderator]

J. Peden
June 23, 2009 9:00 am

As of 10:30 am here I have not heard exactly when the protest will be happening today, and they apparently have not happened yet.
It all depends upon when the giant paper mache puppets will arrive.

ChrisK
June 23, 2009 9:10 am

“Douglas DC (08:23:30) :
Having West Virgina roots Hansen’s horde is messin’ where they should’nt
be a messin’…”
Funny how that is. I grew up in a really rural Ohio county. A mfg company
wanted to build a state of the art steel coating facility 6 years ago.
When the county was debating the issue one evening about a dozen
protestors showed up.
They had flown in from Chicago.
They said what they wanted and then some. The next day a local farmer
caught them stomping around on his property trying to get near the land.
He made it very clear they were not welcome and it would be in their best
interests to skeedadle. Funny how they couldn’t find the humor in that.
The good news is the plant went in and brought about 65-70 good jobs
to the area…
Heck,I met people over in coal county several years ago who would just as
soon dump the bodies in a deep coal shaft than deal with this…
Not that I am advocating this!
Chris

June 23, 2009 9:24 am

I don’t know about Miami but we have had a miserable wet and cold June in Massachusetts

P Walker
June 23, 2009 9:40 am

Also over at Master Resource is a nifty article on Joseph Romm and Waxman Markey . Posted today , I think .

SteveSadlov
June 23, 2009 9:40 am

I must admit, putting a school in that location (looks quite new, must have come after the mining op) was pi__ poor planning. Just the noise factor alone would make it a bad deal.

P Walker
June 23, 2009 9:44 am

OOPS ! You have the same Article posted here – I read this one first . Sorry…..

Mitchel44
June 23, 2009 9:50 am

Fort Lauderdale, http://gallery.surfacestations.org/main.php?g2_itemId=1797
No Miami that I could find, except in Texas, try Perrine (down towards Homestead), http://gallery.surfacestations.org/main.php?g2_itemId=1815

Editor
June 23, 2009 10:09 am

Merrick (08:53:03) :

Miami is reported a new record heat and Ft. Lauderdale is reporting a record tie – 100 degrees F. Watt’s the story on those NWS sites?

See http://wattsupwiththat.com/2009/02/10/floridatrend-its-hot-but-dont-blame-global-warming/
This is OT, please don’t reply here. If you must reply, please do so at
http://wattsupwiththat.com/tips-notes-to-wuwt/

bill
June 23, 2009 10:18 am

SteveSadlov (09:40:50)
http://www.wvec.com/sharedcontent/APStories/stories/D8BH5CI80.html
Massey has said coal silos at prep plants are the best way to control excess dust, while the chemicals used there are found throughout the industry. Marsh Fork Elementary was built in 1968 and the prep plant was built in 1975, before permitting laws were written.
Looks to me as if the mountain top removal began in 2008 wrecking the site for a wind farm

June 23, 2009 11:07 am

P Walker, here’s the link:
http://masterresource.org

MikeN
June 23, 2009 12:03 pm

So is the debate with Blankenship going to happen?

Ron de Haan
June 23, 2009 12:10 pm

Wattsup with that? Obama sells utter BS to promote Climate Bill:
Presidents say the darndest things: Obama suggests that our water is contaminated by carbon dioxide
Obama urges Congress to move swiftly on climate [fraud] bill | Environment | guardian.co.uk
The intervention from Obama comes on the eve of a high stakes vote in Congress on a climate change bill. Democrats in Congress have called on Obama to make a personal appeal for the bill which is on a high stakes course this week.

The presidential intervention crowns a carefully coordinated effort by the White House, administration officials, environmental organisations and major corporations to build support for a bill that is at the heart of Obama’s agenda.

“At a time of great fiscal challenges, this legislation is paid for by the polluters who currently emit the dangerous carbon emissions that contaminate the water we drink and pollute the air we breathe,” he said.
http://tomnelson.blogspot.com/2009/06/presidents-say-darndest-things-obama.html

Ray
June 23, 2009 12:40 pm

Gore and Hansen’s favourite say is: “Climate Change is real”.
Here’s what 60 scientists in Canada had to say about that:
“”Climate change is real” is a meaningless phrase used repeatedly by activists to convince the public that a climate catastrophe is looming and humanity is the cause. Neither of these fears is justified. Global climate changes all the time due to natural causes and the human impact still remains impossible to distinguish from this natural “noise.””
http://www.financialpost.com/scripts/story.html?id=b703a122-f20b-4cce-8a05-c773e7f878ec

Michael J. Dunn
June 23, 2009 12:42 pm

bill (10:18:05) :
…”Looks to me as if the mountain top removal began in 2008 wrecking the site for a wind farm”
Just an observation about the environmental implications of certain technologies: Wind generators require a significant amount of copper in their windings and armatures. Copper must be smelted from ore that is usually obtained from open pit mines. If the electrical power is collected and distributed on aluminum power lines, aluminum must be smelted from ore that is obtained from open pit mines. So, volumetrically, what is the tradeoff between coal open pit mines and copper/aluminum open pit mines? You will always have the latter, and an increased reliance on electricity for purposes usually served by carbonaceous fuels (e.g., transportation) will only increase the mining required.
I have seen open pit mines and I have also seen the immediate post-eruption devastation caused by the Mount St. Helens eruption. The latter is healing quite nicely. Natural growth is largely unstoppable (I live in logging country). This does not mean industrial exploitation should be heedless of better ways to conduct mining operations, but neither does it mean we should think that nature can be permanently blighted by human activity. Or why are we AGW skeptics?

tty
June 23, 2009 12:43 pm

Presumably this is leading up to a new CO2 tax on soda pop?

Ray
June 23, 2009 12:47 pm

Ron de Haan (12:10:40) :
This is as drole as it is very pathetic. I guess Obama has the same science teacher than Waxman and most of the prople in Congress?

Ray
June 23, 2009 12:53 pm

Michael J. Dunn (12:42:26) :
Most likely they must be using lots of coal generated electricity to run their electric smelters in order to make those wires.
So if Hensen shuts down all coal power plants, they will never have the wires needed for their windmills. No amount of windmills can feed such process.

MC
June 23, 2009 12:55 pm

Tuesday June 23, 2009
Darryl Hannah, Ken Heckler arrested at W.Va. protest
by The Associated Press
NAOMA, W.Va. — Actress Darryl Hannah, NASA scientist James Hansen and more than two dozen other mountaintop removal mining opponents have been arrested during a protest in southern West Virginia.
State Police said about 30 people were charged Tuesday afternoon after they blocked State Route 3 near a Massey Energy subsidiary’s coal processing plant in Boone County.
They were among several hundred protesters who held a rally outside an elementary school that sits about 300 feet away from the plant’s coal storage silo.
After the rally, the crowd marched quietly to the plant and attempted to enter the property. They were blocked by several hundred coal miners chanting “Massey.”
Hannah, Hansen, former Rep. Ken Hechler and 27 others then sat on the road and were arrested on misdemeanor charges of obstruction and impeding traffic.

June 23, 2009 1:05 pm

Hansen is a disgraceful embarrassment to his position with NASA and to NASA. I feel that it is inappropriate for the government to be squandering my tax dollars paying his salary.

June 23, 2009 1:15 pm

Hansen is a disgraceful embarrassment to his position with NASA and to NASA. I feel that it is inappropriate for the government to be squandering my tax dollars paying his salary.

I assumed that he took a day off work.
/sarcasm off.

Michael D Smith
June 23, 2009 1:16 pm

So much for a debate, I presume Blankenship won’t sully his good name by debating with the criminal element of society…

MC
June 23, 2009 1:18 pm

I like this headline better…yet to mention Hansen’s name in the headline. Same article though…
Darryl Hannah, scientist arrested at W.Va. mine protest
NAOMA, W.Va. — Actress Darryl Hannah, NASA scientist James Hansen and more than two dozen other mountaintop removal mining opponents have been arrested during a protest in southern West Virginia.
By The Associated Press
Advertisement – Your ad here
NAOMA, W.Va. — Actress Darryl Hannah, NASA scientist James Hansen and more than two dozen other mountaintop removal mining opponents have been arrested during a protest in southern West Virginia.
State Police said about 30 people were charged Tuesday afternoon after they blocked W.Va. 3 near a Massey Energy subsidiary’s coal processing plant in Boone County.
They were among several hundred protesters who held a rally outside an elementary school that sits about 300 feet away from the plant’s coal storage silo.
After the rally, the crowd marched quietly to the plant and attempted to enter the property. They were blocked by several hundred coal miners chanting “Massey.”
Hannah, Hansen, former Rep. Ken Hechler and 27 others then sat on the road and were arrested on misdemeanor charges of obstruction and impeding traffic.

Ray
June 23, 2009 1:20 pm

MC (12:55:17) :
Looks like Hansen found a way out of the debate.

AKD
June 23, 2009 1:24 pm

Please, please, please tell me WV State Police release mugshots.

MC
June 23, 2009 1:29 pm

From an article yesterday…
“Both sides, along with West Virginia Public Broadcasting, were trying to work out arrangements for the event to take place Wednesday at Mountain State University in Beckley. A time had not yet been set.”

MC
June 23, 2009 1:31 pm

From radio news just now: Still no agreement on when/where the debate will take place.

cbone
June 23, 2009 1:39 pm

Ok. Who do I need to complain to at NASA to finally get this clown fired. It is inexcusable for a government employee to be arrested at a protest.

Tenuc
June 23, 2009 1:58 pm

Obama quote:-
“At a time of great fiscal challenges, this legislation is paid for by the polluters who currently emit the dangerous carbon emissions that contaminate the water we drink and pollute the air we breathe.”
Confirms what I thought for a long time – the man’s a loony…

Ashby Lynch
June 23, 2009 1:59 pm

Why did Hansen choose this particular mine site? If I am not mistaken, this is the old Armco mine, and the product is primarily metallurgical coal, not steam coal. Are we going to build windmills without steel now? I guess that we will build windmills from met coal mined in underground mines that don’t have preparation plants and don’t use anymore electricity than can be supplied by windmills. Should make for an interesting system of production.

MC
June 23, 2009 2:11 pm

Here’s the latest article…
Daryl Hannah, scientist arrested at W.Va. mine protest
SUNDIAL, W.Va. — More than two dozen people — including actress Daryl Hannah and NASA climate scientist James Hansen — were arrested Tuesday in the latest protest in a growing civil disobedience campaign against mountaintop removal in Southern West Virginia.
By Ken Ward Jr.
Staff writer
The Associated Press
A West Virginia state trooper arrests actress Daryl Hannah during a mountaintop removal protest on Tuesday.
SUNDIAL, W.Va. — More than two dozen people — including actress Daryl Hannah and NASA climate scientist James Hansen — were arrested Tuesday in the latest protest in a growing civil disobedience campaign against mountaintop removal in Southern West Virginia.
Thirty-one protesters were charged with obstructing officers and impeding traffic after they sat down in the middle of W.Va. 3 outside Massey Energy’s Goals Coal preparation plant in Raleigh County.
Protesters dropped their initial plan to enter the Massey operation, and risk arrest for trespassing, when several hundred coal miners, family members and other industry supporters blocked the entrance to the site. One Massey supporter was also arrested, and charged with battery during a brief confrontation with protesters.
“Tensions were pretty high,” said State Police Sgt. Michael Baylous. “But nobody got hurt and we’re pleased with that.”
Those arrested in the protest were among several hundred people who gathered for an anti-mountaintop removal rally, held just down the road in a field adjacent to Marsh Fork Elementary School. Organizers picked the site because of the school’s proximity — less than 300 feet — to Massey’s operations, especially the huge slurry impoundment up the hollow.

June 23, 2009 2:15 pm

“One Massey supporter was also arrested, and charged with battery during a brief confrontation with protesters.”
I hope he popped Hansen.

MC
June 23, 2009 2:21 pm

Hansen chose that mine protest site as it is more about the construction of a coal silo tower near an elementary school, which is a heart-tug to everyone, including us skeptics.
Mountaintop removal, and the side problem of constructing the silo beside the school, is a separate issue from CO2 driving climate change that will destroy the planet. I do not like mountaintop removal it either. I do not buy the CO2-driver-only concept. However, I believe he just hopes nobody notices that little difference. Maybe the CO2 issue is running low, considering the current cooling trend going in the opposite direction of increasing CO2 levels.

P Walker
June 23, 2009 2:32 pm

A friend who does business with Massey was going to call and ask about the debate . I havan’t heard back . From the cired arrest article , it looks like Blankenship might wind up in bed with the UMWA – strange times .

RoyFOMR
June 23, 2009 3:49 pm

I don’t understand why Darryl Hannah is getting into tow with this crowd. She, of all people, must see that adapting to Climate Change is a far more effective strategy than the Canutian approach favoured by her fellow-travellers.
She’s proven already that sea-level rises are not an issue for her. It makes a sorry tail that she’s now getting splashed up on the front pages, for all the wrong reasons, along with her new chums.

NS
June 24, 2009 12:54 am

“At a time of great fiscal challenges, this legislation is paid for by the polluters who currently emit the dangerous carbon emissions that contaminate the water we drink and pollute the air we breathe,” he said.
Lol – watch out Coke & Pepsi – they’re coming for you next.

MC
June 24, 2009 7:35 am

It sounds like Hansen/Blankenship cannot agree on a time and place for the debate.

E.M.Smith
Editor
June 25, 2009 10:51 pm

Last year there was a string of bomb threats, and this fellow was arrested for SNIP! a least
I think that ought to be spell checked…

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