West Virginia's Kanawha State Forest is home to hiking and biking trails, campsites and a shooting range. But just a few hundred acres away, the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection has approved a mountain top removal mine site. A coalition is working to highlight the potential impacts of the mine on residents, and to plant and animal life in the forest.
After spending more than three years and $6 million to monitor how gas drilling is affecting public forests, the state Department of Conservation and Natural Resources has yet to release the information, and environmental groups are beginning to raise questions.
The American chestnut was once a keystone species in eastern forests; it was prized for its sweet nuts, rot resistant wood, and picturesque beauty. But it was decimated by a tiny fungus accidentally imported from Japan. Now a few organizations are working to restore "The Mighty Giant."
For decades, deer have been blamed for mowing down sections of forests. Research suggests lower numbers of deer through management efforts are making a difference—but it's unclear if other factors are also holding forests back.
The trees of Cook Forest State Park survived the clear-cutting of Pennsylvania more than a hundred years ago. Now the virgin old-growth hemlocks in the park are threatened by a pest that has plagued trees from New England to Georgia.
In 1998 Allegheny Front reporter Chuck Staresinic went out of the studio and into the night to capture an early morning protest against W