The Environmental Threats of Coal

The coal industry spans across the Philippines' landmass particularly in Northern Region, so has a big impact on all environmental concerns in the country. The practices of coal fired power plants and coal mining companies can either have a positive impact on our economy or can have a detrimental impact on our natural environment.

Its adverse effects to our environment

Coal industry particularly coal burning greatly contributes to what they call environmental phenomenon global warming. This global warming involves greenhouse effect process by which radiative energy leaving a planetary surface is absorbed by greenhouse gases thus warming the earth's surface. The reason why coal burning contributes to global warming is that coal emits greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide, sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxides and others. In some regions where coal burning is abundant, it has caused acid rains which contaminate vegetation soil and groundwater supply.

Aside from harmful emissions of coal burning, coal mining applications ruin forests and local wildlife. Just take for example in the Cordillera Philippines, where coal mining activity is mostly done in this region, the Cordillera forest that used to be watershed protecting the Northern Luzon has been ruined by mining applications. Based on DENR-CAR (Department of Environment and Natural Resources- Cordillera Administrative Region) data the region's forest cover is now critically below 40% of the total land area of 1.8 million hectares. The ideal forest cover should be 40% or higher of the land area. Moreover, according to elders in that region, reforestation is even useless to save the watershed areas since these were now all replaced by mining applications.

As with many industries there were some historical practices that we now look back on and find it hard to believe that people thought they were doing the right thing. For example, the clearing of large parts of native vegetation in Cordillera lead to some severe examples of environment degradation. The government actually permitted foreign investors to put up mining applications and coal fired power plants without considering its adverse effects to our environment with the belief of leading the country to energy sustainability. Of course this didn't turn out the way they thought it to be and if coal industry had continued this way it would ultimately risk the environmental and economic sustainability of the entire country. The Filipino community has suffered already and this should not add to their burdens anymore.

What is the sustainable way of generating energy?

Environmental sustainability for the energy industry means that the demand for energy has been met without risking our natural environment and balance of nature is maintained. The revolutionary biosphere technology answers both concerns while helping clean up our environment. It is a waste to energy system wherein it can destroy and convert waste materials into marketable end products like green energy. The technology uses gasification process thus significantly eliminates wastes without harming our environment. It has passed all U.S. and European atmospheric emissions standards including the latest EPA regulations.