A Prayer for the Mountains

In about an hour I will leave my office and walk two blocks over to Lafayette Park, located directly across from the White House, for a candlelight prayer vigil being led by religious leaders and organizations calling on the Obama administration to halt the immoral coal mining known as mountaintop removal.

"The purpose of the rally is to remember the nearly 500 mountains already destroyed by mountaintop removal mining," according to Jordan Blevins, Assistant Director of the National Council of Church's Eco-Justice Office, and the sponsor of the event, "and to have people of faith call upon the federal government to end this destructive practice."

The National Council of Churches is the ecumenical voice of America's Orthodox, Protestant, Anglican, historic African American and traditional peace churches, and represents over 45 million Americans in 100,000 congregations across the country.

My friend Jeff Biggers has more details on the event -- and he helpfully notes that the electricity at the White House (and throughout the rest of the city) comes courtesy of a power plant near the U.S. Capitol building.  The plant is fueled by coal from Appalachia that -- you guess it -- is strip-mined by mountaintop removal.

Incidentally, NRDC -- with our partners at the Lindquist Environmental Appalachian Fellowship (LEAF) -- last year created a faith outreach campaign that featured billboards with this message: "Only God should move mountains."  We're grateful that a growing chorus of religious voices is putting biblical beliefs about stewardship into action to protect God's creation from the world's worst coal mining.