TUSCALOOSA, Ala. (AP) An underground coal mine project to be developed over the next six years has been granted significant tax incentives. The Tuscaloosa News reports Hoover-based Walter Energy has been granted about $25 million in tax abatements by the Tuscaloosa County Industrial Development Authority for the $1.2 billion project. The development will touch four Alabama counties, but most will be in northern Tuscaloosa County, where the mine will be located.
This story is part of an investigation into how federal regulators and the mining industry are failing to protect coal miners from the excessive toxic coal mine dust that causes black lung.
The concern about black lung isn't just focused on coal miners working underground. A new study by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) documents severe cases of the disease among surface coal miners, too.
An investigation by NPR and the Center for Public Integrity found federal regulators and the mining industry are failing to protect miners from the excessive toxic coal mine dust that causes black lung. The disease is now being diagnosed in younger miners and evolving more quickly to complicated stages.