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Lyndsey Gilpin @lyndseygilpin
, 12 tweets, 7 min read Read on Twitter
Many things @realDonaldTrump said at the WV rally yesterday were completely false, but the thing that is most offensive is that he went into Appalachia and claimed we have “crystal clean water" in this country. Let's talk about that for a second.
First of all, this country was given a "D" in drinking water infrastructure by @ASCEGovRel last year and it will cost $1 trillion to fix it. infrastructurereportcard.org/cat-item/drink…
In most places in Appalachia, you can't drink the water. At all. Ever. Martin County, KY has had contaminated water for decades, and people aren't given notices of violations until months after. scalawagmagazine.org/2018/03/kentuc…
Perry County, Kentucky is similar. I wrote a story for @HuffPost about the water quality issues there. One woman I spoke to hikes up a mountain to find clean spring water when her water goes out in the winter. huffingtonpost.com/entry/appalach…
According to @ewg data, nearly all of the top ten most polluted water districts in the states of Tennessee, Kentucky and Virginia are in Appalachia. West Virginia has a high number of violations as well. Just click on the states to take a look. ewg.org/tapwater/index…
As a personal anecdote, my partner lives in Whitesburg, Kentucky —one of the bigger cities in the Central Appalachian region — and you don't drink the water. Ever. I wrote about it in a @southerlymag newsletter a while back: southerlymag.org/2018/06/12/poi…
Google "coal slurry spill Appalachia" and you'll come up with hundreds of examples. Egregious spills that were never cleaned up, hardly investigated, forgotten about. Here's a @wvgazettemail example from 2014: wvgazettemail.com/news/dep-inves…
And now, with the pipeline boom in Appalachia, more drinking water could potentially be contaminated. Virginia water board just voted not to consider revoking stream-crossing permits for the Atlantic Coast Pipeline. via @roanoketimes roanoke.com/business/news/…
As a reporter in this region, I can tell you that getting people to care about the lack of clean water in Appalachia is incredibly difficult. I've been trying to report on it for months, and other journalists have been trying to hold the states/industries accountable for years.
My final thought for now: Appalachians know they've been harmed by coal industry. They are angry and fighting for clean water, and rightfully angry no one has paid attention to that fact. They're not buying these claims, and media needs to quit assuming they are.
Here are some of the organizations doing legal, organizing, policy work on water that you can follow: @AppCitizensLaw @macedky @AppVoices @kftc @selc_org (please feel free to add any I've missed, or add stories on water in #Appalachia to this thread)
While I have y'all, please subscribe to @southerlymag, my new independent media org that covers these types of issues in Appalachia and the South (spoiler: there are many others like it and they are underreported) southerlymag.org/subscribe/
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