New Dirt On Clean Coal

By Wendy Gabriel

GREEN TIP:  If you have the choice between working on a desktop or a laptop, choose the latter.  Also, when it’s time to upgrade to a new computer, think laptop.  According to The Daily Green, laptop computers draw only 15 to 25 watts during regular use as compared to the 150 watts used by a conventional desktop computer and monitor.  Plus, laptops draw just a fraction of a watt when in sleep mode. 

Not only should we being doing all we can to conserve energy, we need to focus on clean, renewable energy sources.  As much as the coal industry would want us to believe it, coal is not one of those sources. 

As stated in the Greenpeace report The True Cost of Coal, “coal is used to produce nearly 40% of the world’s electricity.  However, burning coal is one of the most harmful practices on the planet.  It causes irreparable damage to the environment, people’s health and communities around the world.  The coal industry isn’t paying for the damage it causes, but the world at large is.”

Every day millions of people are adversely impacted by the coal industry.

In Columbia, indigenous communities are threatened and forced off their lands to make way for coal mines.  Thousands in Jharia, India suffer from horrendous living conditions because of uncontrollable coal fires.  In Russia, unsafe mining conditions have meant injury and death for scores of workers.

Did you know there are hundreds of toxic waste sites from abandoned coal mines dotting U.S. landscapes?  The piles of refuse from closed mines are causing concern for people in Maryland and Pennsylvania.  Read  Tom Pelton‘s account aptly entitled Maryland Coal Mining’s Toxic Legacy to get up to speed.

Did you know more than 500 million gallons of sludge, thanks to a Tennessee Valley Authority power plant, was spilled into the backyards of many Tennesseans in December 2008?  A retention wall holding the sludge, which is ash resulting from coal combustion, breached.  Read the details from the Samira J. Simone piece at CNN.com.

Did you know the U.S. government has permitted expansion of coal mining on Navajo sacred ground?  Ironically, the same day the retention wall breach occurred in Tennessee, the U.S. Department of Interior’s Office of Surface Mining granted Peabody Western Coal Company a permit to continue, expanded its Black Mesa project and re-authorized it’s use of the N-Aquifer.  Read Caitlin Sislin‘s article for Sustainablog to find out why this new permit is causing concern.

And this is just the tip of the iceberg.  There are so many heartbreaking stories of disease, injuries and deaths caused by the coal industry.  The use of coal is a problem from start to finish, from mining through combustion to the disposal of waste.

You can do something about it today.  Sign Progressive Future’s petition asking President-elect Obama to reassess his support of coal.

Be Educated.  Be Green.

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  1. Clean Coal Energy’s avatar

    The alternative energy resources are been than coal is also been a part but they cannot support as much the coal suppport for the future needs.Clean Coal is an idea to reduce the global warming.It is more informative regarding the clean coal which is more useful to get the knowledge about it.

  2. Paul Hassing’s avatar

    In Australia, we’re sitting on around 400 years of coal deposits. With plenty of buyers for our high-quality coal, there’s little political will for leaving it in the ground. I agree that clean coal is an oxymoron. Sometimes I feel like taking an oxy to the morons! Great post and blog. I look forward to reading more. Best regards, P. 🙂

  3. Wendy Gabriel’s avatar

    Paul,
    Therein lies the rub. I too would like to take an oxy to the morons, well said. Thanks for visiting!

    Wendy

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