For the first proposal of my white paper, I chose to look into coal mining and coal-fired power plants. I found that regulations are being set for business to limit their greenhouse gas emissions. The mining and burning of coal contributes greatly to greenhouse gasses and global warming.
This image portrays the emissions from a typical coal-fired power plant. The caption states that the plumes of smoke being released from the power plant contain sulfur dioxide, mercury, nitrogen oxides, and carbon dioxide. Images like this one are common, as they visibly show the impact that coal burning is having on the environment. Pretty much any viewer can realize that the opaque gas being released cannot be good for the environment. Images like this one make it much easier for the average citizen to comprehend the negative impact that coal burning has, compared to diagrams and scientific models. The smoke plumes rising into the already grey and hazy sky provide a powerful visual description of why coal is a disputed power source in the United States today.