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Death and Disease from Fine Particle Pollution by Coal Fired Power Plants
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Maybe you never smoked but still have Emphysema and always wondered WHY??

The people and land of West Virginia pay many of the true costs of coal. One example is detailed in the report of a new study. These are “externalized” costs, costs created by the coal industry but paid by us in a backdoor subsidy. It is paid in dollars as well as in lives and health.

The Clean Air Task Force commissioned studies in 2000 and 2004, with a new update for 2010. The study is narrow and focused on one dimension of the costs that we as citizens pay: death and disease from fine particle pollution by coal fired power plants. The information is summarized in the table below. The table lists an assortment of power plants around the state, with the deaths and disease incidents attributable to that specific power plant. Note that this is only a partial list of West Virginia power plants.

The data are cold and crisp, but indeed stark. For example, this kind of pollution from Allegheny Energy’s Albright plant in Preston County was responsible for 18 deaths and 29 heart attacks in 2010.

Is there a solution? Yes — it’s one that’s well-known. We should be phasing out coal-fired power plants. We can do this by making new commitments to electric energy conservation and efficiency, while expanding renewable energy and the thousands of jobs it will bring.

Death and Disease from Fine Particle Pollution by Coal Fired Power Plants 2010
Power Plant Deaths Heart Asthma Hospital Chronic Asthma ER  
    Attacks Attacks Admissions Bronchitis Visits  
Albright 18 29 280 13 11 14  
Preston Co              
Amos 87 140 1400 65 52 70  
Putnam Co              
Fort Martin 150 240 2300 110 88 110  
Monongalia Co            
Harrison 28 45 440 21 17 22  
Harrison Co              
Kanawha 40 63 640 31 24 33  
Kanawha Co              
Mitchell 51 83 780 38 30 39  
Marshall Co              
Mt. Storm 47 75 740 35 28 37  
Grant Co              
Pleasants 41 66 640 31 24 33  
Pleasants Co            
Sporn 110 180 1700 84 66 89  
Mason Co              

(The full report is available online at the website listed.)
Data Source:

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