Our approach for working with area residents values their knowledge about the land, waterways, and communities. We provide community members with detailed information about proposed projects and potential impacts so they can make informed decisions on individual or collective actions. Our recognition of local expertise is grounded in the belief that people who live with the daily impacts of fossil fuel extraction should be treated with the utmost respect. Our work is informed and directed by how local people think these industries should be held accountable for impacts. By blending organizing and legal work, we seek to create an expanded set of options for achieving justice than might be produced by following solely a legal or organizing approach.
To improve policy and regulations for the oversight of fossil fuel extraction and use; to educate, empower and organize coalfield residents; and to protect public and environmental health.
What We've Accomplished
- Request and testify at public hearings on state and federal permits and regulations on nearly a monthly basis.
- Request meetings with regulatory agencies and legislators to advocate to advocate for improved policies and enforcement.
- Educate residents about the intricacies of pre-mining surveys and post-mining investigations and damage claims.
- Analyze and comment on proposed legislation, regulations, and reports.
- Challenge permits and regulatory decisions that harm human health and environment.
- We host annual fundraisers and events, highlighted by the DRYerson Festival held in Ryerson Station State Park.
- Inform residents of their legal rights and provide them with resources to protect their interests and make decisions with greater confidence.
- We aggressively challenge the falsehoods presented by the coal and gas industry by sharing the experiences and stories of people from the frontlines.
- We help form and provide ongoing support to community grassroots groups that are autonomous and sustainable.
- Provide training and leadership development for directly-impacted community members.
- Give "Fracking in the Coalfields" tours to interested parties, students and government officials from around the world.
The Center for Coalfield Justice was formed as the “Tri-State Citizens Mining Network” in 1994 by a coalition of grassroots groups and individuals concerned about the effects coal mining had on communities and the environment. The people involved recognized the need to work together to build a strong voice in the coalfield community. Tri-State was re-organized into Center for Coalfield Justice in 2007 and has since expanded to work on fossil fuel extraction issues generally. The Center for Coalfield Justice is a non-profit, 501(c)(3) organization governed by a volunteer Board of Directors.