*** 20th Anniversary: 2003 to 2023 ***
Barry's Response - Not exactly a person of many words, are you?
Well, here are a few facts about coal? Combustion of coal tends to cause acid rain, smog and greenhouse gas emissions, primarily in the form of CO2 and CH4. Many believe that leads to increased global warming.
Carbon Monoxide, CO, leads to a variety of acute and long-term health problems.
SO2 emissions lead to acidic moisture in the air and precipitation. This damages buildings, surface water areas and vegetation.
Coal is a major source of particulates - dust particles of various sizes. The smallest and most numerous ones, classified as PM2.5, aggravate the lungs the most, leading to asthma and bronchitis. All particulates cause a smoky appearance in the air.
The next item is a group known as oxides of nitrogen (NOx), in which the x can be replaced by a number. Some of these items cause smog and respiratory problems.
Another harmful group is what we call volatile organic compounds, VOC. There are many problems associated with these, such as ground-level ozone formation. And that leads to even more health problems.
Coal often contains mercury, Hg. This metal is unsafe at very low concentrations. Other heavy metals emitted by coal burning include cadmium (Cd) and even uranium (U). Some are radioactive and carcinogenic.
Arsenic (As) is also carcinogenic at low concentrations, and many coal sources provide that contaminant as well.
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Thank you to my research and writing assistants, ChatGPT and WordTune, as well as Wombo for the images.