Good job bringing this to light. People won't realise how huge the problem is and municipalities are woefully ill equipped to...
Agreed; mining can never be sustainable, but then how do you get the metals to make all the things you need in the course of...
Very good piece.
up to three per cent of worldwide emissions of carbon dioxide, the major global warming gas, could be emanating from the natural fires that are rampaging through coalfields in northern China. The situation is so serious that the Chinese government has called in Dutch scientists to help it put them out.
The fires, some of which stretch for more than 20 kilometres, are incinerating up to 200 million tonnes of coal a year. Many of them are semipermanent and have been burning for years, some even for decades. They break out periodically in the coalfields that cover much of the mountainous north of the country, from Manchuria to the Kazakh border. The coal seams lie close to the surface in this dry region and can ignite spontaneously when oxygen is present. Some blazes may have been started by forest fires. The Beijing Remote Sensing Corporation has asked for Dutch technical assistance in setting up a satellite and aircraft monitoring system that will locate fires in remote areas by identifying flames, heat and smoke. Fire-fighting teams will then attempt to put out the fires or confine them by cutting fire-breaks in the coal.