In a prepared statement, the governor said, "Members of the task force bring a broad range of perspectives and expertise to this effort.
"I am confident that they will be diligent and comprehensive in their review of the information that is available on mountaintop mining practices."
Underwood also appointed to the task force state Sen. Leonard Anderson, D-Summers; Sen. Lloyd Jackson, D-Lincoln; Delegate Steven Kominar, D-Mingo; and Delegate Greg Butcher, D-Logan. Butcher is a coal miner who works at a strip mine.
Others include Betsy Dulin, an environmental engineer and lawyer who is also an associate dean at Marshall; retired WVU forestry professor Dave Samuel, who is also a member of the state Environmental Quality Board; and Fred Tucker, a United Mine Workers of America representative.
The only environmental group representative appointed was John McFerrin, a lawyer who is president of the West Virginia Highlands Conservancy and a Gazette contributing columnist.
Underwood also urged members of the task force to join a three-day Division of Environmental Protection tour of mountaintop removal mines and reclamation projects starting on Monday.
"Once again, we must attempt to achieve some sense of balance in our approach to this issue," he said. "We must weigh a variety of factors, which include technical, environmental, qualify-of-life and economic issues."
The task force is to submit a report to the governor by Dec. 1.