Recently I was reading my AP environmental textbook, and I came across something that I found to be interesting.
"Switching from soft coal with a high sulfur content to low-sulfur coal can greatly reduce sulfur emissions. this may eliminate jobs, however, in such areas as Appalachia that are already economically depressed." pg 411....
I am no demographer but:
IF people in Appalachia and the like are economically depressed so very much, why cant the gov't give certain poor counties in Appalachia (a lot are poverty-stricken) grants to expand and create a WHOLE new job industry? A renewable resource job industry might give them enough bounce to increase education and tourism... tourism might come IF these counties are given enough money to really create something special. I have to admit, win turbines and solar energy are beautiful to me. There are such places like Richmond, CA, that have state of the art solar panel systems that have the ability to attract attention.
Since Appalachia spans over a hundred counties and over many states, I am sure that wind and sun is available enough to harvest. Now, solar paneling IS expensive, but I believe that with enough investments, it has the potential to work.
Some may like mining work, but it is dangerous- there have to be citizens who would like a more educating, globally aware, or else community-effective job (this is not to say that these people's jobs are of less importance in the world). These counties have the potential to be in the limelight. I know the economy is struggling- but the job economy could be jump-started if everyone pooled in and helped a huge section of America become advanced technologically.
Just an incomplete idea of which I should get more information.
Heres the link about Richmond, CA: http://www.altenergymag.com/emagazine.php?art_id=1568