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Altered states

A small crew of workers operating huge machines can tear apart a mountain in less than a year, working to expose and remove layers of low-sulfur coal. The process, known as "mountaintop removal," scrapes away rock and dumps it into adjacent streams and hollows.

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Environmental regulations aim to curtail mountaintop mining
Article | The Obama administration on Thursday imposed strict new environmental guidelines that are expected to sharply curtail "mountaintop" coal mining, a controversial practice that has enriched Appalachia's economy while rearranging its topography.

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