The World experienced tremendous economic growth over the past one hundred years thanks to the use of coal for the generation of electricity. But that growth model has now moved into the annals of history and will never return.
Coal has been displaced by cleaner, cheaper and more effective forms of energy generation, due to the many constraints emerging from the pernicious attributes of that geologically carbonized substance.
Coal is the dirtiest of all energy sources.
The public health consequences of coal mining include black lung disease caused by coal dust, and chronic bronchitis, asthma and congestive heart failure caused by air-polluting particulates, leading to reductions in life expectancy and premature deaths.
These health effects are suffered both by coal miners, as well as by those who live near coal burning plants.
A wealth of alternative energy sources, from wind and solar energy to hydroelectricity and biomass fuel offer a way to power homes, vehicles or businesses without using fossil fuels.
That means renewable energy sources can help reduce the amount of greenhouse gas emissions we put into the air. This one almost goes without saying. If we use renewable energy more often, then we will all reap the health benefits.