Big Coal: The Dirty Secret Behind America's Energy Future
J. Goodell 2007 Mariner Books New York

Given assertions made by the Bush administration, it would seem that coal is a glistening new energy alternative, the answer to the current oil crisis. Few of us realize that coal is already one of America's biggest and most influential industries; Big Coal provides more than half of the electricity consumed by Americans today. Every time we flip a light switch or turn on the television, we burn a lump of coal. And coal's dominance is growing. The problem, Jeff Goodell points out in this eye-opening call to action, is that on close examination, the glowing promise of coal quickly turns to ash. Coal mining practices are setting us up for economic and environmental catastrophes. Forty percent of the carbon dioxide released into the atmosphere each year comes from coal-fired power plants, and pollution from these plants has killed more than half a million Americans in the last two decades. But we've become so complacent about our energy future that we haven't invested in alternatives. Goodell clearly explains how we got here and discusses how we can get out.

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