A massive idea to reforest Appalachian mine sites
"One way or another, we are going to be planting trees on old mined lands in Appalachia."
- Patrick N. Angel, soil scientist/forestry official
A group promoting reforestation in Appalachia is seeking more than $422 million to plant trees on mountains that were cleared or leveled for surface mining, a program that could have a far-reaching impact on the region's economy and environment.
The goal is to return trees to hundreds of thousands of acres where they once stood but which coal companies reclaimed, or repurposed, as grassland after surface mining over the past three decades.