"Kentucky's leaders should consider the health hazards of mining, moving and burning coal as they craft the state's energy policy, an environmental group said Tuesday.
The Kentucky Environmental Foundation, based in Berea, released a 44-page 'health-impact assessment' on coal and sent copies to Gov. Steve Beshear and the General Assembly.
The statement cites published, peer-reviewed scientific studies from recent years that document health risks associated with coal. They include air and water pollution from mountaintop-removal mining, mercury emissions from coal-fired power plants, and toxic metals, including arsenic and cadmium, that are found in coal-waste storage ponds. Burning coal also releases heat-trapping gases that contribute to climate change, the statement says."