Report: Appalachian states face billions in mining cleanup

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — A new report says the cleanup and reclaiming of coal mines in seven Appalachian states will cost billions. The report by the environmental group Appalachian Voices says Kentucky and West Virginia have the largest bills coming due. Total reclamation liability for the two states is between $4.1 and $5.8 billion. Less than half of that is currently covered with existing bonds. Reclamation of coal sites typically includes improving the environment and reversing the damages of surface and underground mining. The report says part of the blame falls on large corporate bankruptcies that have occurred in the last decade.