30 Days

Season 3 Episode 1

Working in a Coal Mine

Aired Wednesday 10:00 PM Jun 03, 2008 on Planet Green



  • Trivia

  • Quotes

    • Morgan Spurlock: We know that there are health risks. We know that there are environmental concerns, but that doesn't stop us from using coal. But the question is, what other choice do we have? We have to use coal because we haven't spent the time to really invest in something better. Before I went to the coal mine, I knew very little about the people who worked there, and really, what it does for not only my home state, but the entire country. After this experience, it just makes you realize how many people are affected by coal and by the industry. But coal is finite. If one day coal will be gone, what are we gonna do then? It's almost like we are living with one foot in the past and one foot in the future, and we really need to be looking a little more ahead at what we are gonna do, because we can't wait 250 years until it just disappears. We have to start thinking about it now, and I think that's the only choice we have. The only choice is progress.

    • Coal Miner: All you need to be a coal miner is a weak mind and a strong back.

    • Morgan Spurlock: I'd like to think that, you know, what I'm shoveling here is powering the electricity in a children's hospital, but in reality, what I'm shoveling here is probably powering some guy masturbating in front of his computer. Gotta look on the bright side all the time. Either way, I'm making someone very happy.

    • Morgan Spurlock: The red hard hat I'm wearing shows that I am an apprentice coal miner. I'm not allowed to operate any heavy machinery, but instead will be handed all the grunt work.

    • Morgan Spurlock: For the next 30 days, I'll be following these rules. First, I'll work regular shifts in a coal mine, and face the very same dangers as all the other miners. Second, I'll explore the impact of the coal industry on our environment. And third, I'll live with a family that has been mining coal for generations.

    • Morgan Spurlock: Back home, coal is definitely king.

    • Morgan Spurlock: We hear a lot about coal these days, but what about the people who mine it? What's life like for the guys I grew up around, who stayed in West Virginia, and who go underground every day to keep our world powered up? There's one way to find out, as I go back home to West Virginia to work as a coal miner for the next 30 days.

    • Morgan Spurlock: I left West Virginia twenty years ago, but he truth is, coal mining still affects my life everyday. And you know what, it also affects you.

  • Notes

  • Allusions

    • Morgan calls coal miner Dale "the Mr. Miyagi of coal mining", comparing him to the wise mentor in The Karate Kid film series.