To the Editor:
Who should pay cleanup costs?
Burning coal releases heat-trapping carbon dioxide, harmful plumes of mercury and other hazardous substances into the atmosphere. The damaged Deepwater Horizon releases oil and natural gas into the Gulf of Mexico. Burning coal damages the environment in a similar fashion to the damages inflicted by the oil and gas spewing into the Gulf of Mexico. To date, Big Coal has had about the same success rate in cleaning up its mess as Big Oil is having in cleaning up the Gulf of Mexico. At least Congress is mandating that Big Oil pay out of its pocket, the cost of cleaning up its mess. It would seem to me appropriate for the Congress to embark on a similar course of action with Big Coal for cleaning up the harmful releases to the atmosphere from burning coal.