Big Coal Goliath Murray Energy Sues Advocacy Group for Spreading Truth
Brian Nettles, Esq.
Even though it’s 2014 (and not the industrial revolution), the harmful coal industry still lives on. And it continues the harm that it inflicts on our environment and our families.
Murray Energy is one of the largest coal mining companies in the country. Last year, it purchased five coal mines for $3.5 billion. After donating $2.8 million in the 2012 election to conservative candidates, Murray laid off 143 workers because the company couldn’t “bleed cash.”
That’s an interesting choice of words considering that Murray Energy works hard to block protections for coal miners and air quality (Public Justice). In 2007, nine people died when a Murray mine (operated by a subsidiary) collapsed with the force of a 3.9 magnitude earthquake. The U.S. Department of Labor cited ‘repeated failure’ to fix their design despite knowing that it was unsafe for miners. That particular mine wasn’t a fluke – a Murray mine in Illinois reportedly racked up roughly 3,500 safety violations in just two and half years. This year, the company cut off medical coverage for 1,200 retired employees. And these reports are just the tip of the iceberg as far as Murray offenses go….
Needless to say, Murray Energy’s actions didn’t go unnoticed. This summer, Public Citizen, a non-profit consumer advocacy group, ran radio ads spreading the truth about the company’s mission to avoid responsibility
and repeatedly turn its cheek away from the harm it causes to its workers and the environment.
Murray Energy’s response? Sue Public Citizen! Instead of listening to the concerns of the public and its advocates, Murray Energy is trying to quiet them with a baseless lawsuit. Lawsuits take time and resources. As a Big Coal goliath, Murray Energy can afford them–and knows that Public Citizen cannot. The group now has to use the resources that would go to defending health, safety, and democracy, to now to defend itself against a Big Coal company hell-bound on keeping Public Citizen quiet.
If you can, please make a donation (no matter how large or small) to Public Citizen as they fight for the future of clean energy and consumer rights.
All information shared from Public Justice.