Environment: All the Marble

A global mining firm offers good jobs in rural Vermont, but protesters say the environmental cost is too high

The way Annette Smith sees it, Omya Industries is trying to blow up part of her town. To be sure, it's not a very big part--just a few dozen acres on a 400-acre tract in the Vermont mountains where the company wants to dig a marble mine. Still, Smith, head of the group Vermonters for a Clean Environment, wants to stop it.

The way Omya sees it, Annette Smith is denying the world its calcium carbonate. That's pretty much all marble is, after all. Crush it down fine, and it becomes a powder pure enough to be mixed into food to...

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