Archive for pollution

The True Costs of Coal: A Very Brief Introduction

Posted in Save Appalachia with tags , , , , , , on July 23, 2009 by ezlnwv

The social harm caused by coal is enormous.

Of course there is the obvious horror of mountaintop removal. I once led a discussion with coalfield residents in which we brainstormed about 100 of its horrible effects, ranging from the disappearance of wildlife to the boulders that were crashing in nearby homes.

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Acid Mine Drainage: Little Understood, Majorly Lethal

Posted in Save Appalachia with tags , , , , , , , , , , on December 23, 2008 by ezlnwv

Most of the effects of strip-mining are conspicuous. One only has to venture away from an interstate or tourist trap in the coal fields to witness unimaginable destruction (try exit 74 on I77. Take a left at the exit, then another left).  But arguably the most detrimental aspect of strip-mining is more insidious–its lethalness not readily apparent. I am talking about acid mine drainage; and in this entry I will explain what it is, what causes it, and what effects it has on the environment and the health of its victims.

Acid mine drainage behind my house in Logan, WV

Acid mine drainage behind my house in Logan, WV. AMD is only manifest here because colorful iron deposits have precipitated.



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