west virginia water crisis and i’m smack dab in the middle

girl goes up

I live and work in Kanawha County, West Virginia. If you don’t know–and you might not–we’ve had a chemical leak into the Elk River just above West Virginia American Water Company’s water intake station on the same river. Something like 300,000 people are without water. No one is sure how dangerous the chemical is or how long the crisis will last. The chemical is 4-methylcyclohexane (say that three times fast) methanol, an agent used in coal production.

Lots of things are being said and–if you know where West Virginia is you’ve likely heard jokes about us being incest-loving, shot-gunning toting hillbillies–a lot of these things are not pleasant. There’s a certain community that thinks we should have all been more prepared. And, perhaps, we should all be prepared for the worst, but I hardly think it is foolish to expect safe drinking water in the United States. Or, at least…

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