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On Jan. 9th, 2014, nearly 10,000 gallons of the chemical MCHM (used to prepare coal) leaked from into the Elk River putting 300,000 families at risk.
Charleston, West Virginia
United States
3 Team Members

Urgent Crisis Update

On Thursday evening, January 9th, 2014, nearly 10,000 gallons of the chemical MCHM (used for coal preparation) leaked from a storage tank into the Elk River about 1.5 miles upstream of the Charleston area's municipal water supply intake. This negligence put the state's largest urban population at risk and without water for even the most basic of needs. The spill prompted Governor Earl Ray Tomblin and President Barack Obama to declare a state of emergency.

Days after the chemical spill and news that “flushing” was in process to restore safe water to 300,000 West Virginians, a new advisory was released by the CDC cautioning pregnant women against drinking the water.

That advisory for pregnant women remains in effect.

Immediate relief is needed for pregnant women, especially low-income pregnant women, while they are waiting for clearance to drink and use the water. 

In the wake of the worst chemical spill in our state’s history, WV FREE is poised to embrace its vision and mission to enable West Virginia women and families to parent in healthy, safe environments. Working in partnership with the state's leading environmental activists, we seek funding to support education and organizing efforts spearheaded by Maye Nye, an expert on chemical safety. 

Water is a basic human right and everyone should have access to clean drinking water. We must not lose this incredible opportunity to channel the outrage into collective action for change. We must hold the coal and chemical industries accountable for the welfare of the women and families that have been affected by this disastrous leak.

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This campaign ended on February 28, 2014
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