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April 30, 2018

NEW YORK POST LIKES E. KY. PROJECT TO REPLACE COAL JOBS 

 

Solar-power professional Jonathan Webb says he will bring about 600 jobs to Central Appalachia with high-tech mountaintop greenhouses Solar-power professional Jonathan Webb says he will bring about 600 jobs to Central Appalachia with high-tech mountaintop greenhouses

AppHarvest  WILL BREAK GROUND 'IN A FEW WEEKS' IN PIKEVILLE, KY.

 

Jonathan Webb of AppHarvest Screen Shot 2018 04 30 at 9.22.53 AMJonathan Webb of AppHarvest Screen Shot 2018 04 30 at 9.22.53 AMSolar-power professional Jonathan Webb says he will bring about 600 jobs to Central Appalachia with high-tech mountaintop greenhouses where workers will grow produce to sell all over the U.S., Salena Zito reports for the New York Post.

Webb, 33, left his hometown of Lexington, Ky., to work in New York City in 2010, and was hired in 2014 by the Army to help President Obama increase use of renewable energy. After Donald Trump's election, Webb said he wasn't surprised that Trump's message had resonated in Appalachia, an area reeling from unemployment, the opioid epidemic and general disillusionment, Zito reports.

Shortly afterward, he founded AppHarvest, Webb says he has raised $60 million in capital from such investors as Hillbilly Elegy author J.D. Vance and AOL co-founder Steve Case.

He said he's tried to convince the executives at some of the nation's largest environmental organization to invest. "I have told them . . . they have a poor strategy in some cases," Webb told Zito. "Instead of campaigning against coal for green-collar jobs in coal country, they need to facilitate investment into the region to build projects."

Criticizing the coal industry is cheap and easy, he said, but jobs are the best way to get Appalachians to support environmental initiatives.

Webb told Zito that AppHarvest expects to break ground in the next few weeks on the first greenhouses in Pikeville, Ky.

Written by Heather Chapman Posted at 4/30/2018 

To see more check out the January Perspectives section of The Lazer or go HERE.

 

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