Air Quality Concerns Remain Months after US Steel Fire Extinguished

Apr 12, 2019

On this West Virginia Morning, a fire at a US Steel plant crippled its ability to control its air pollution in December. For three months, the Pittsburgh area was blanketed with releases of sulfur dioxide much higher than usual, and thousands reported suffering from poor air quality. Last week, the steelmaker finished repairing its pollution control equipment. For State Impact Pennsylvania, the Allegheny Front’s Reid Frazier reports that the worries about air pollution and its health impacts, remain.

Also on today’s show, historically, the coal industry has shaped the economic boom and bust cycle in our region. But major changes to the industry have created new strains on our economic system here in Appalachia, and some wonder if a radical fix is needed to support the poor or underemployed middle class. Some Democrats in Congress have pointed to an idea -- called Basic Universal Income -- as one possible solution. Lovey Cooper, contributing editor with 100 Days in Appalachia, co-wrote an article about Basic Universal Income. Roxy Todd spoke with her to find out what supporters and critics of the idea have to say.

And Award-winning bluegrass group Balsam Range made their first appearance on Mountain Stage earlier this year with songs from their newly released album “Aeonic”.  This week’s Mountain Stage Song of the Week titled, “If I Needed Someone,” finds the band blending bluegrass with The Beatles.

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West Virginia Morning is produced with help from Caitlin Tan, Jessica Lilly, Kara Lofton, Liz McCormick, Dave Mistich, Brittany Patterson and Roxy Todd.

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