The Last Mountain Movie (Mountain top removal) - Essay Example

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A majority of the electricity produced in the US comes from coal, a significant portion of which is mined from the Appalachian Mountains. Mountain top…
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The Last Mountain Movie (Mountain top removal)
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Download file to see previous pages The process results in both air and water pollution, which is not just local but also has the potential to spread across states. Huge amounts of coal sludge is generated, which when spilled, pollute local rivers. Local wells and springs are contaminated with heavy metals. Moreover, freshwater fish from water bodies around such locations are unsafe for consumption due to the risk of mercury poising. The process also damages the homes of local residents by causing floods as the natural drains such as waterways and streams have been buried in the process. The process also results in the depletion of forest cover, which would have otherwise existed on the mountains. The use of explosives for blasting the mountain tops leaves behind vast amounts of toxic wastes, and the resultant rubble along with silica dust or fly ash often finds its way into people’s homes as the wastes are dumped down the valley. Thus, the ecological balance and safety of the local environment is affected in a very adverse way.
The local people have been affected in terms of both health and economy. The pollution caused during the process of mountain top removal and coal mining results in innumerable adverse effects on human health. Common health complications include brain damage, breathing disorders and cancers. As pointed out in Bill Haney’s The Last Mountain, every year in the US, emissions from the coal plants result in more than 10 million cases of asthma, 600,000 cases of brain damage in newborn children, apart from 43,000 premature deaths. Brain tumors and autism are common in such localities. The homes of the local residents undergo destruction because of flooding and rubble dumped into the valley. A large number of people lose their jobs due to increasing mechanization of coal mining.
As big coal companies have replaced manual labor and jobs with machines, the number of local jobs has been brought down significantly. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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