|What the U.S. has to look forward to|
An investor in Chile wanting to build a hydroelectric dam or coal-fired plant potentially faces years of costly political battles and fierce resistance from nearby communities.The environmental impact of coal is horrendous. As an example...
- Coal-fired power plants are responsible for one-third of America’s carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions.
- Coal combustion waste is the nation's second largest waste stream after municipal solid waste.
- Forests are destroyed by mountaintop removal mining.
- Coal causes a loss or degradation of groundwater.
- Transportation of coal releases air pollution such as soot and can lead to disasters that ruin the environment.
But the new U. S. President of Profit has decided we need to create more jobs at the expense of destroying the environment so he picks the coal industry as the next goal for all this increased employment. The problem with this is that the entire coal industry employs fewer people than Arby's. That's right, a U.S. fast-food chain has more people working for it than all the coal companies nationwide. But Donald John apparently doesn't see the ignorance in his efforts, because this is a passionate group and it got him top TV exposure. They like him, they like him.
Industry experts have pointed out repeatedly, that the coal jobs are extremely unlikely to come back. The plight of the coal industry is more a function of changing energy markets and increased demand for natural gas than anything else. Coal is basically dead, and from here on should be relegated to once a year Christmas stockings. Besides, from experience over the years, coal mining companies have placed minimum emphasis on safety with the former CEO of Massey Energy convicted of conspiracy to willfully violate mine health and safety standards in 2015.
It gets worse: "Coal contains minor amounts of the radioactive elements, uranium and thorium. When coal is burnt, the fly ash contains uranium and thorium at up to 10 times their original levels. And, its 500 tons of small airborne particles, can cause bronchitis, reductions in lung function, increased hospital and emergency room admissions, and premature death. It also contains arsenic, lead and mercury. Solid waste from a typical 500MW coal plant contains 120,000 tons of ash and 193,000 tons of coal sludge from the smokestack scrubber." (Excellent stats thanks to Sourcewatch.org)
Here's one. Trump is cutting back on Obama's environmental protections but then instructs "...federal regulators to rewrite federal rules to reduce carbon emissions." Are they different? Are they better? Or is this just a way to delay and eventually do nothing? I vote for the latter. Apparently a $39 million cost figure under Obama's plan can't be confirmed, but isn't saving the environment worth spending a significant amount of money on? The problems of the appalling conditions in China have been used to signify a need to take action in the U.S. before it is too late.
In total, the statistics may not be real but the problem of pollution in America is very real.