EEB events: Cure for the Common Coal
Environmental and social justice advocate Maria Gunnoe will anchor a trio of experts
on coal in session titled, “Cure for the Common Coal.” Joining Gunnoe are Jeremy
Richardson, Union of Concerned Scientists Kendall Science Fellow in Clean Energy
Innovation and Stuart Batterman, Professor of Environmental Health Sciences at the
University of Michigan. Knute Nadelhoffer, Director of the University of Michigan
Biological Station and Professor of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology will moderate the
panel. They will talk about the problems with coal mining and burning, as well as options
for cleaner, more humane sources of energy.
These four speakers represent a breadth of experience with the environmental and human
health impacts of mining and burning coal. Batterman and Nadelhoffer study human and
environmental impacts of air pollution. Gunnoe is a social justice educator and vocal
opponent of mountaintop removal mining. Richardson is a physicist who currently works
in the policy realm on energy issues.
Both Gunnoe and Richardson have deep family connections to West Virginia coal
mining. Richardson’s grandfather and father worked for the mines, as does his brother.
Gunnoe’s grandfather was also a miner. He bought the land where her family still
lives, and which was covered in toxic coal sludge in a 2004 flood. It was this flood that
prompted Gunnoe’s activism against mountaintop removal mining. Ms. Gunnoe is the
2012 Raoul Wallenberg Medal recipient. The University of Michigan awards the medal
each year to an outstanding humanitarian.
SPONSORS: University of Michigan Biological Station and the Union of Concerned
Scientists, along with these U-M units: Department of Ecology and Evolutionary
Biology, Environmental Law and Policy Program, Program in the Environment, School
of Natural Resources and Environment and School of Public Health
Location: Room 2024 Dana Building, 440 Church St., Ann Arbor