03 Oct '11, 9pm

Damage from Coal Costs US Economy More than the Electricity it Generates is Worth: New Study

Photo: Jen SFO-BCN via Flickr/CC BY I was out on vacation last week, but I still caught wind of the new headline-making study Environmental Accounting for Pollution in the United States Economy . The study, which was published in the prestigious journal the American Economic Review , caused quite a stir in green circles, and for good reason -- the authors found that mining and burning coal actually imposes more costs on the economy than the value it creates by generating power. It's hard to find a sexy way to frame this wonky-seeming finding, but it is absolutely huge . It means that continuing to rely on coal does more damage to our economy than good. And forget, for a second, about the health risks and sullied natural habitats -- this is strictly economically speaking. Grist's Dave Roberts explains : Coal's net economic effects on the U.S. are poorly understood, to say t...

Full article: http://www.treehugger.com/files/2011/10/damage-coal-costs...

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