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Thunder on the Mountain : Death at Massey and the Dirty Secrets Behind Big Coal
by Peter A. Galuszka


Overview -

"Scathing expose of the coal industry."
--"The New York Times Book Review"
""
""On April 5, 2010, an explosion ripped through Massey Energy's Upper Big Branch Mine, killing twenty-nine coal miners. This tragedy was the deadliest mine disaster in the United States in forty years a disaster that never should have happened.  Read more...


 
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More About Thunder on the Mountain by Peter A. Galuszka
 
 
 
Overview

"Scathing expose of the coal industry."
--"The New York Times Book Review"
""
""On April 5, 2010, an explosion ripped through Massey Energy's Upper Big Branch Mine, killing twenty-nine coal miners. This tragedy was the deadliest mine disaster in the United States in forty years a disaster that never should have happened. These deaths were rooted in the cynical corporate culture of Massey and its notorious former CEO Don Blankenship, and were part of an endless cycle of poverty, exploitation, and environmental abuse that has dominated the Appalachian coalfields since coal was first discovered there. And the cycle continues unabated as coal companies bury the most insidious dangers deep underground, all in search of higher profits, and hide the true costs from regulators, unions, and investors alike.

But the disaster at Upper Big Branch goes beyond the coalfields of West Virginia. It casts a global shadow, calling into bitter question why coal miners in the United States are sacrificed to erect cities on the other side of the world, why the coal wars have been allowed to rage, polarizing the country, and how the world's voracious appetite for energy is satisfied at such horrendous cost.

With "Thunder on the Mountain, "Peter A. Galuszka pieces together the true story of greed and negligence behind the tragedy at the Upper Big Branch Mine, and in doing so he has created a devastating portrait of an entire industry that exposes the coal-black motivations that led to the death of twenty-nine miners and fuel the ongoing war for the world's energy future."

 
Details
  • ISBN-13: 9781250000217
  • ISBN-10: 1250000211
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Press
  • Publish Date: September 2012
  • Page Count: 283
  • Dimensions: 8.7 x 5.8 x 1.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.25 pounds


Related Categories

Books > Business & Economics > Corporate & Business History - General
Books > Business & Economics > Industries - Energy
Books > Social Science > Disasters & Disaster Relief

 
Publishers Weekly Reviews

Publishers Weekly® Reviews

  • Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
  • Review Date: 2012-06-04
  • Reviewer: Staff

Appalachia may be blessed with the “world’s best metallurgical coal,” but as journalist Galuzka’s powerful book shows, this coal is both “a curse and a prize.” According to Galuszka, the “coal barons” have deliberately thwarted the growth of a middle-class among miners in order to cement their social control. He initially focuses on the horrendous 2010 disaster at Massey Energy’s Upper Big Branch mine, in which 29 miners were killed. He convincingly excoriates the safety record of Massey Energy and its controversial former CEO, Don Blankenship. While Blankenship’s outspoken antagonism toward unions and regulators drew negative comment even in the coal industry, many executives were quietly sympathetic. This perception provides a springboard to the central dichotomy: the geographical and cultural isolation of the Appalachian people, perpetuated by inaccurate and condescending popular conceptions, has fostered a big-profit environment for Big Coal even as the region remains impoverished. Drawing on his personal experience of Appalachia, Galuszka offers a sympathetic but unsentimental portrait of the region’s people and their struggles. (Sept.)

 
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