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coal burning and air quality



The Michigan Environmental Council has used the Freedom of Information 
Act to find out how much pollution Michigan's coal-burning power plants 
jettisoned into the air in 1995.  The 32 plants reporting to the 
Department of Environmental Quality dumped 668 million pounds of sulfur 
dioxide, 3 million pounds of small particulate matter, and 19 million 
pounds of carbon monoxide into the air of Michigan.  The plants are not 
required to report the emissions of two other critical pollutants -- 
mercury, which has caused a public health advisory regarding fish 
consumption on all 11,000 inland lakes, and carbon dioxide, thought to 
be a major contributor to global climate change.  This information 
should underscore what's at stake environmentally in the coming 
deregulation of the electric utility industry.  Anyone wishing 
emissions information for a local or specific facility should simply 
contact us by e-mail or by phone at 517-487-9539 and ask for Dave Dempsey.