Field of Science

Coal's devastation

Having almost forgotten about the coal ash spill in Tennessee last month (courtesy of Tom Kilgore), this article in the Sierra Club Magazine recalls the other devastating effect of that industry:
To begin to appreciate the enormity of the mountaintop-removal sites--some of which stretch across 15 square miles--you have to fly over them. Even so, the scale of the destruction is hard to comprehend. That devastation is not limited to trees and mountains, but extends to the people who live among the ruin. They tell stories of poisoned water, dried-up wells, and cracked foundations. They testify to fish kills, company intimidation, and roads crumbling beneath the weight of overloaded coal trucks. They fear paid-off inspectors, 100-year floods that now happen twice a year, and above all the wide-reaching power of King Coal.
And here is a shocker for those who, like me, don't know how much coal a regular household uses for electricity:

Nuclear power starts sounding real good?

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