30 Sep '11, 11am

Economists say coal is incredibly costly

Cross-posted from ThinkProgress Green . A new economic analysis of the costs of pollution to the United States finds that coal power is harming the economy. In the American Economic Review article "Environmental Accounting for Pollution in the United States Economy ," economists Nicholas Z. Muller, Robert Mendelsohn, and William Nordhaus model the physical and economic consequences of emissions of six major pollutants (sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxides, volatile organic compounds, ammonia, fine particulate matter, and coarse particulate matter) from the country's 10,000 pollution sources. They estimate the "gross external damages" (GED) from the sickness and death caused by the pollution, and compare that to the value added to the economy: Solid waste combustion, sewage treatment, stone quarrying, marinas, and oil and coal-fired power plants have air pollution damages larger...

Full article: http://www.grist.org/coal/2011-09-30-economists-say-coal-...

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