Coal country is not without options. But coal’s long legacy of hope, promises and failure has instilled a political inertia that won’t soon be overcome.
What happens when a $28.6 billion industry spirals into permanent decline?
Coal’s decline has forced staunchly anti-Obamacare politicians to reconsider Medicaid expansion, while rural communities depend on telehealth more than ever.
Coal communities in Appalachia and Wyoming are vital revenue engines for huge portions of the rural U.S., and they face devastation with little time to adjust to new realities.
Groups working to support out-of-work coal miners and their communities are trying to accelerate their strategies.