Welcome to The WV Independent Observer’s SIGHTLINE stories — in-depth explorations of important topics intended to inform and engage our local community.
Some stories need to be told though more than snippets and soundbites. The Observer’s Sightline stories focus on key issues to provide background — historic, economic, cultural, legal, environmental — and explore topics from multiple points of view.
Jefferson County could be home to several large scale solar power projects - if the County can amend its zoning to permit these facilities. There has been much discussion, several amendments, and several lawsuits since this process began in 2020.  Read the Full Story >>
What is karst? Who is responsible for protecting surface waters and groundwater in WV? How can community members ensure the safety of their drinking water resources. This SIGHTLINE covers topics surrounding water in Jefferson County. Read the Full Story >>
Appalachia is often viewed through a narrow lens. The stories of Black communities throughout the region are often left untold or simply overlooked. Acknowledging these communities and preserving their stories helps us to truly understand the broad patterns of the cultural landscape in which we live today. Read the Full Story >>
Jefferson County began to amend its zoning ordinance to allow for utility-scale solar in 2020. The process has had several setbacks, but a vote by the County Commission on April 5, 2022 has restarted the amendment process. Read the Full Story >>