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Ask me anything   Blog for Hollow, an interactive doc that examines the future small town America through the voices of Appalachians.
Take a scroll through small-town America: www.hollowdocumentary.com

twitter.com/hollowthefilm:

    Coal executive predicts more layoffs due to weak market →

    The head of Alpha Natural Resources, the largest coal producer in West Virginia, said the mine closures and layoffs the company announced last month probably won’t be the last this year.

    Kevin Crutchfield, Alpha’s chief executive officer, also said he is concerned that the United States is following a regulatory path that will eventually turn the nation irrevocably away from coal and raise prices.

    Alpha is the nation’s largest supplier of metallurgical coal, which is used in steel making, and the company is a major supplier of steam coal used by utilities to generate electricity.

    Coal markets have weakened in recent months. Metallurgical coal demand has softened because of slower growth in China and India and ongoing financial uncertainty in Europe. Steam coal demand has softened because warm weather across much of the United States has reduced electricity generation.

    On Feb. 3, Alpha announced that subsidiaries in Kentucky and West Virginia would idle four mines immediately and two others by early 2013, while several other mines altered work schedules or reduced the number of production crews.

    — 2 years ago
    #coal  #industry  #jobs  #West Virginia  #economy  #energy  #supply  #natural gas  #Mountain State  #Alpha Natural Resources 
    Old Caretta Tipple

    Photo by Alan Johnston. Taken at old mining tipple in Caretta, West Virginia (McDowell County).

    — 2 years ago with 11 notes
    #photography  #alan johnston  #residents  #community  #mining  #mine  #caretta  #West Virginia  #appalachia  #industry  #economy 
    'Brain Drain': Put a Stopper in Your Mouth →

    A few years ago, at a conference about the woes of rural America, one speaker really caught my attention with a very simple message. “Never say ‘rural brain drain,’” She told us. “Think about it.” She pointed out that to say “brain drain” in a rural community is basically telling everyone  present — the people who stayed — that they’re dumb. You’re implying they somehow missed the boat and are demonstrating low IQ just by being rural. 

    — 2 years ago with 8 notes
    #rural brain drain  #united states  #towns  #rural  #education  #economy 
    Lou Martin: Boone County, Blair march stays with historian →

    Two million people left Appalachia between 1945 and 1970, and many others were trapped in newly purchased company houses, living on donated flour and beans after their unemployment ran out.

    — 2 years ago with 11 notes
    #lou martin  #boone county  #blair mountain  #appalachia  #West Virginia  #population  #loss  #economy  #jobs 
    Riverside Drive in Downtown Welch, West Virginia. Photo by Alan Johnston, Premier Photos

    Riverside Drive in Downtown Welch, West Virginia. Photo by Alan Johnston, Premier Photos

    — 2 years ago with 5 notes
    #welch  #West Virginia  #mcdowell county  #rural  #ghost town  #United States  #economy  #alan johnston 

    There goes the neighborhood

    December 18, 2011 

    Bank foreclosures and abandonment are causing high home vacancy levels in neighborhoods across the country. Scott Pelley travels to Cleveland, a city that’s fighting back against blight.


    — 2 years ago with 20 notes
    #cleveland  #ohio  #United States  #economy  #recession  #homes  #real estate  #cleveland  #ohio 
    Economic Summit discusses issues in Iola, Kansas →

    The 17 counties that make up Southeast Kansas have the highest unemployment rates of any region in the state. They also have the highest poverty rates of any region, as well as the lowest health numbers.

    Each senator came up with at least 10 individuals to interview for their thoughts on the issues which kept economic growth stunted in this region, and overall roughly 50 interviews were conducted with the help of state staff.

    Those results were compiled by state staff and condensed into a list of 10 “key issues” that faced the area, each of which encompassed a multitude of even more specific problems.

    The 10 key issues were:

    • Readiness to Work (work ethic and professionalism)
    • Workforce Development (mismatch between  workforce skills and available jobs)
    • Focusing on Localism instead of Regionalism (needing to switch from the former to the latter)
    • Downtown Pride and Entertainment
    • Brain Drain (the educated youth who leave the region)
    • Property Taxes (tax burden has been shifted to local government)
    • Drug Abuse, Welfare/Poverty Cycle (“A welfare cycle that can’t be broken.”)
    • Need for Leadership
    • Lack of Quality Housing.


    — 2 years ago with 14 notes
    #kansas  #iola  #economy  #summit  #politicians  #solutions  #senators  #workforce development  #localism  #brain drain  #rural  #drug abuse  #welfare  #poverty cycle  #housing  #leadership 
    Since “Hollow” will be a fusion of documentary portraits with data and maps, when I come across a cool graphic I will be posting it here. This one is by Adam Wagner, from Cleveland. I love the colors and use of shapes here to show change over time. We will be working with statewide and county-wide data from the 1940s to today to create interactive graphs. And speaking of Cleveland, my colleagues Matthew Hashiguchi (Cleveland native) and Nathaniel Hansen, will have roles on this project too! Check out the full post of “20 Beautifully Created Charts and Graphs” 

    Since “Hollow” will be a fusion of documentary portraits with data and maps, when I come across a cool graphic I will be posting it here. This one is by Adam Wagner, from Cleveland. I love the colors and use of shapes here to show change over time. We will be working with statewide and county-wide data from the 1940s to today to create interactive graphs. And speaking of Cleveland, my colleagues Matthew Hashiguchi (Cleveland native) and Nathaniel Hansen, will have roles on this project too! Check out the full post of “20 Beautifully Created Charts and Graphs” 

    — 2 years ago with 5 notes
    #graphs  #charts  #design  #adam wagner  #matthew hashiguchi  #nathaniel hansen  #interactive  #documentary  #west virgnia  #data  #statistics  #economy  #boom and bust