LETTER: Coal generation is destructive to the environment

Wednesday, September 23, 2009 | 2:27 p.m. CDT; updated 9:14 a.m. CST, Tuesday, December 8, 2009

I'm really glad you wrote about the MU students' rally for coal-free energy on Wednesday. It’s a really important issue to address.

From blowing off the tops of mountains in mining to disposal of toxic coal ash, every part of coal power generation is incredibly destructive. The most notable example of this is that coal plants emit nearly 40 percent of our nation's carbon dioxide emissions, making them major contributors to global warming.

Recent studies have predicted that Missouri will look more like Texas by the end of the century and agricultural yields will drastically decline due to extreme weather, floods and heat waves if emissions aren’t dramatically reduced soon.

Fortunately, we can eliminate coal and continue to power the country. Alternative energy is the future. With our current economic state, there isn’t a better time to phase out coal and implement clean energy jobs.

This is why MU is ready and already accomplishing great things to phase out coal and lead the way into the clean energy future responsibly. MU has already cut our power needs while saving money, like the $4.3 million MU's Energy Management has saved annually from conservation efforts. Efforts like this put us on the right track, but there is much more we can do to be a leader in coal-free energy.

I applaud the student-led efforts across the country to make campuses coal-free, and I urge our administration to make MU a national leader in coal-free power generation and clean energy.


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