CLARKSBURG, W.Va. – Coal has been a part of West Virginia’s economy and culture for decades.
When energy comes to mind in the Mountain State, coal is the first thing that pops into our heads.
I can think about what coal really means to West Virginians. This is the place we went to for our livelihoods. These were the jobs and incomes that held our families together and gave people their futures.Thomas Minney, State Director, The Nature Conservancy in West Virginia
However in recent years, coal production has decreased in West Virginia – open, cleared, and flat fields formerly home to coal mines have become the front-runner for something brighter on the horizon thanks to some new legislation.
There was a bill passed this last legislative session, SB 583, and that authorized the first 400 megawatts of solar energy production to be installed on former mine lands.Eriks Brolis, Economic Development Lead, The Nature Conservancy in West Virginia
Solar energy sites are in the works on former mine land and coalfield sites in north-central West Virginia as well as in the southern half of the state.
The southern coalfields present a lot of opportunity. There are tens, if not, thousands of acres that can potentially host these solar facilities.Eriks Brolis, Economic Development Lead, The Nature Conservancy in West Virginia
Solar facilities that will bring new waves of energy to West Virginians so that sunlight and Mother Nature can keep tradition alive.