By Shelley Vinyard and Lauren Randall, Environment America Research & Policy Center
Our dependence on oil and coal-fired power plants has broad detrimental impacts on our health and our environment. Power plants represent America’s single biggest source of air pollution, affecting our waterways, destroying ecosystems, and polluting the air we breathe.1 Pollution from coal-fired power plants in particular contributes to four of the five leading causes of mortality in the United States: heart disease, cancer, stroke, and chronic respiratory diseases.
Dirty Energy’s Assault on our Health is a series of reports examining the numerous threats that power plants pose to our environment and our health. Each segment in the series focuses on a different pollutant emitted by power plants.
This report looks at the health and environmental impacts of mercury pollution from power plants.