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From the Ashes (2017)

PG | | Documentary | 2 June 2017 (USA)
From the Ashes captures Americans in communities across the country as they wrestle with the legacy of the coal industry and what its future should be under the Trump Administration. From ... See full summary »


Michael Bonfiglio

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Cast overview, first billed only:
Regina Lilly Regina Lilly ... Herself - Lincoln County Resident
Cecil Lilly Cecil Lilly ... Himself - Former Miner
C. Belmont Keeney C. Belmont Keeney ... Himself - Appalachia Historian (as Chuck Keeney)
Carl Pope Carl Pope ... Himself - Environmentalist / Author
Richard Martin Richard Martin ... Himself - Author, 'Coal Wars'
Jeremy Richardson Jeremy Richardson ... Himself - Union of Concerned Scientists
Ethan Zindler Ethan Zindler ... Himself - Bloomberg New Energy Finance
Mary Anne Hitt Mary Anne Hitt ... Herself - Sierra Club / West Virginia Resident
Danny Whitt Danny Whitt ... Himself - Retired Coal Miner
Charles 'Hawkeye' Dixon Charles 'Hawkeye' Dixon ... Himself - Retired Coal Miner
Jeff Kessler Jeff Kessler ... Himself - West Virginia State Senator
Justin Marcum Justin Marcum ... Himself - West Virginia State Delegate
Christiana Figueres Christiana Figueres ... Herself - United Nations
Michael Oppenheimer Michael Oppenheimer ... Himself - Climate Scientist, Princeton University (as Dr. Michael Oppenheimer)
Bruce Nilles Bruce Nilles ... Himself - Sierra Club


From the Ashes captures Americans in communities across the country as they wrestle with the legacy of the coal industry and what its future should be under the Trump Administration. From Appalachia to the West's Powder River Basin, the film goes beyond the rhetoric of the "war on coal" to present compelling and often heartbreaking stories about what's at stake for our economy, health, and climate. The film invites audiences to learn more about an industry on the edge and what it means for their lives. Written by Production Team, From the Ashes

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What is the true cost of coal?



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Rated PG for thematic elements and some language | See all certifications »






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2 June 2017 (USA) See more »

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User Reviews

Coal: An Adhesion From the Past.
26 June 2017 | by rmax304823See all my reviews

We are desperately in need of programmatic films like this. The difficulty is that those most in need of this information are those least likely to expose themselves to it.

The documentary covers most aspects of the current fuel situation, focusing on coal -- it's mining, transportation, treatment, and its economic and environmental impact. It's continued use leads to a carnival of horrors.

The conclusion, drawn not just from this film but from multiple credible sources, is that coal belongs in the 19th century as a source of energy and that many of us cling to its use either because we don't understand the economics involved or because any alternative threatens their world view.

It doesn't help when the federal government, dominated by conservative businessmen, lie in order to promote the notion that coal mining is "coming back." It's not. The lies are blatant. It isn't mentioned in this program but Scott Pruitt, Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, claimed recently that 50,000 jobs had been created this year in the coal mining industry. The Bureau of Labor Statistics shows 1,300 over the same period.

No one should underestimate either the damage caused by the use of coal or the strength of the forces supporting its use.

The program is informative and sometimes moving. The descriptions of mining and transportation are adequately covered but there are also illustrations of its impact on families, including children.

We've changed our major sources of fuel before. We used to rely entirely on wood and whale oil, then coal, then oil. And now it's time to switch again to renewable sources. But our defiance of any change, our clinging desperately to a dying tradition, prevents us from doing the rational thing, namely putting research and development into alternative energy sources. China is now the leading producer of solar panels and wind turbines. They're ahead of the curve. If you install a solar panel or a small wind turbine on your own property in Oklahoma, an oil state, you pay a penalty.

How can something so obvious, so simple, be denied by so many Americans?

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