• Petitioned Gainesville City Commission

This petition was delivered to:

Gainesville City Commission
Gainesville Mayor
Ed Braddy
Gainesville City Commission
Lauren Poe
Gainesville City Commission
Yvonne Hinson-Rawls
Gainesville City Commission
Todd Chase
Gainesville City Commission
Randy Wells
Gainesville City Commission
Helen Warren
Gainesville City Commission
Craig Carter

Gainesville, FL City Commission: End Gainesville Regional Utility's purchases of mountaintop removal coal

    1. Petition by

      Gainesville Loves Mountains

September 2014


Gainesville Loves Mountains: On Thursday, Sept. 18th, the Gainesville City Commission voted unanimously to condemn the practice of mountaintop removal coal mining.

A 5-2 majority also voted to establish a new coal procurement policy for Gainesville Regional Utilities that seeks to exclude mountaintop-mined coal from our fuel mix.

Mountaintop removal (MTR) is arguably the most devastating form of energy extraction our nation has yet encountered--and Gainesville, FL can help bring it to an end!  

To-date, MTR has permanently erased more than 500 peaks from the Appalachian mountains, buried or polluted more than 2,000 miles of pristine headwaters streams, and swept away more then 800 square miles of one of America’s most diverse and valuable ecosystems. The social, health, and economic toll on the region has been equally dire.

Our City Commission can end Gainesville's connection to MTR by asking GRU to avoid any future purchases of coal mined using this method.  Let's help make Gainesville an example of how communities can embrace a clean energy future! 


As a few of our friends in Appalachia have said:

“As a native West Virginian and 11th generation Appalachian, I have witnessed first hand the impacts of mountaintop removal on the health and heritage of the Appalachian people. Too many people are sick and dying because of MTR.  Please act! We are running out of time here and remember we all live downstream.”

-Dustin White.  Charleston, WV


“Coal companies have major influence over politicians in Kentucky. We need help from other states to stop this practice.”

-Jeanne Marie Hibberd.  Berea, KY


“We are sickened by the ever constant devastation of our homeland and we don't believe that we should have to suffer this kind of destruction to have a job...it is important to remember that with the decline of a finite resource and an eye toward a future economy, every time we blow up another mountain, we destroy yet another future economic development opportunity.”

-Kathy Selvage.  Wise, VA

Recent signatures


    1. Thank you for helping us win a victory for the mountains!

      Friends of the mountains,
      On Thursday, Sept. 18th, the Gainesville City Commission voted unanimously to condemn the practice of mountaintop removal coal mining. A 5-2 majority also voted to establish a new coal procurement policy for Gainesville Regional Utilities that seeks to exclude mountaintop-mined coal from our fuel mix.

      This victory is a huge step forward for our campaign, and could not have been won without the steadfast support of Gainesville City Commissioner Lauren Poe, our friends at Appalachian Voices, and the tremendous volunteer efforts of our local supporters.

      Your petition signatures were presented to the Commission during the meeting, and more than one Commissioner personally commented to us how many people had contacted them expressing support on this issue. Thank you, thank you, thank you.

      We've got a lot more work ahead of us to make sure that this policy is implemented properly, to end mountaintop removal for good, and to help people find smart ways to cut back on their utility bills. As we've said time and again, communities do not have to choose between dirty energy and high utility bills.

      If you live in the Gainesville-area and would like to volunteer with our organization, please contact us (gainesvillelovesmountains@gmail.com; 352-610-1090). You can also follow us on Facebook (www.facebook.com/GainesvilleLovesMountains), where we will continue to post information related to ending the practice of mountaintop removal and transitioning to a clean energy economy.

      If you live in another part of the U.S. and have a municipally-owned, coal-consuming utility, we encourage you to replicate our campaign. We are happy to share information and resources with you, as are our friends at Appalachian Voices (www.appvoices.org).

      And finally, wherever you live, let's work together to make this year the year we end mountaintop removal for good. Visit www.ilovemountains.org to learn more about what you can do to help bring this devastating practice to an end.

      In solidarity,
      Gainesville Loves Mountains

    2. We can win this week with your help!

      Friends of the Mountains,
      This Thursday night the Gainesville, FL City Commission has an opportunity to set a new coal-purchasing policy for our utility. With your help, we can make sure they move our community one more step towards sustainability and away from the dirtiest of the dirty fuel sources—mountaintop removal coal!

      If you live in the Gainesville area, please plan to join us this Thursday at 8pm at City Hall (https://www.facebook.com/events/572417336201832/). Invite your friends to come along as well. Citizen turnout will determine whether we win or lose this campaign.

      If you can't make it in-person, please take a few minutes to contact the Commission this week and let them know that you want to see an end to Gainesville Regional Utility's purchases of mountaintop removal coal (http://www.cityofgainesville.org/CityCommission.aspx). Personal emails or phone calls to our Commissioners are priceless, and only take a few minutes of your time.

      And finally, something that anyone can do to help out, regardless of where you live, share our online petition with your friends and family (https://www.change.org/p/gainesville-fl-city-commission-end-gainesville-regional-utility-s-purchases-of-mountaintop-removal-coal). We'll be presenting these petition signatures to the Commission on Thursday night.

      Thanks for all of your support. The mountains are feelin' your love.
      Onward to victory!
      Gainesville Loves Mountains

      Gainesville, FL City Commission meeting to discuss mountaintop removal coal purchases | Facebook

      Gainesville, FL City Commission meeting to discuss mountaintop removal coal purchases | Facebook

    3. Help bring Appalachia to Gainesville, FL!

      As a local supporter said recently, "To harm someone is harder to do when one is looking him or her in the eye."

      Two weeks from today, the Gainesville City Commission will decide whether our utility will continue purchasing coal that is mined using mountaintop removal. We want them to know what that decision means to our friends in Appalachia, so we're trying to bring a few folks down for a visit.

      Dr. Matt Wasson from Appalachian Voices (http://appvoices.org/about/team/) has already confirmed to standing with us. We're also hoping to bring a coalfield resident down to join him. Any donations (https://org.salsalabs.com/o/1741/p/salsa/donation/common/public/?donate_page_KEY=10214) made to GLM during these next two weeks will go towards providing travel expenses and honorariums for our Appalachian guests. Your contribution would be deeply appreciated.

      If you are in the Gainesville area, please plan to join us at the Sept. 18th City Commission meeting (https://www.facebook.com/events/572417336201832/).

      If you aren't in the area, please help spread the word about this campaign and let our Commissioners (http://www.cityofgainesville.org/CityCommission.aspx) know what this issue means to you. Personal letters, emails, and phone calls from folks in the Appalachian region who are impacted by this issue mean a lot!

      And finally, announcing the:
      Monumental Mountain Montage: Call for mountain photos!

      We want to honor the mountains we love in a Monumental Mountain Montage. We invite you to submit your favorite mountain photos. We want to see YOUR mountain memories in our montage! Submit your photos on our Facebook event page.

      We will post the montage to our website to emphasize this strong connection between Gainesville residents and Appalachia and share it with the public in the lead-up to September 18th.

      Thank you so much, we can win this victory with your support!
      In solidarity,
      Gainesville Loves Mountains

    4. Reached 1,500 signatures
    5. Gainesville City Commission decision on Mountaintop Removal Coal purchases

      Friends of the mountains,
      Next month the Gainesville, FL City Commission will vote whether to curtail our utility's purchases of coal mined using mountaintop removal. Your support has been critical--please help us finalize this victory!

      Here's what you can do now:
      1) Share our petition with your friends--we'd like to reach 2,000 signatures by next month.

      2) Like and share our Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/GainesvilleLovesMountains)--we'll be posting updates about our campaign there.

      3) Personal contacts to our City Commission are priceless. Even a brief personal phone call or email with the simple message “I want Gainesville Regional Utilities to bring a permanent end to their consumption of MTR coal” goes a long way. (http://www.cityofgainesville.org/CityCommission.aspx)

      4) Donate to Gainesville Loves Mountains (https://org.salsalabs.com/o/1741/p/salsa/donation/common/public/?donate_page_KEY=10214)--we'll use the funds to bring Appalachians who live in the shadow of mountaintop removal to our community to testify.

      If you live in Gainesville and have even an hour of time to donate over the next month, please contact us (gainesvillelovesmountains@gmail.com; 352-610-1090)--we could really use your help reaching out to supporters in our community. And finally, please put the evening of Thursday, September 18th in your calendar and plan to join us at City Hall. A strong showing of citizen advocates will send a powerful message to our Commissioners.

      Thank you for all your help. King Coal has been abusing our friends in Appalachia for far too long. Our small community can be one more in a string of recent victories nationwide that can help bring a permanent end to the horrific practice of mountaintop removal.

      In solidarity,
      Gainesville Loves Mountains

      Gainesville Loves Mountains

      Gainesville Loves Mountains, Gainesville, Florida. 709 likes · 14 talking about this. GLM partners with Appalachian allies to end mountaintop removal...

    6. Reached 1,000 signatures
    7. Kathy Selvage's story

      Kathy is from Wise County, VA and has seen more than her share of mountaintop removal. Kathy visited Gainesville last year to tell her story: http://youtu.be/iFhPmK2s-vw.
      Let's help Kathy end the destruction of Virginia's mountains!

    8. Reached 100 signatures


    Reasons for signing

    • Jennifer Downey GAINESVILLE, FL
      • about 1 month ago

      Mountaintop removal is an ecological disaster in my ancestral home. I don't want my current home contributing to that, and I'd prefer my GRU dollars to be going to used for more sustainable energy sources.

    • Troy Helmick KINGWOOD, WV
      • about 1 month ago

      We must end Mountain Top Removal coal mining practices now.

    • Frances Sullivan LAKE WORTH, FL
      • about 1 month ago

      Mountaintop removal is the same as raping the land. It can never, ever be restored to it's natural beauty. Mountaintop removal also pollutes the streams that run downhill to the towns and cities below! It MUST stop!

    • Daniel Freed GAINESVILLE, FL
      • about 1 month ago

      Our city should not be destroying our nation's mountaintop ranges for the short term benefit of cheaper utility prices.

    • Sue Sherrill ATLANTA, GA
      • about 1 month ago

      I believe it is wrong to destroy the beauty God gave us for profit, not to mention polluting rivers below.


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