Coal and natural gas, the other fossil fuels, have played and will continue to play important roles as the United States works towards a comprehensive sustainable energy policy. That being said, coal will continue to be replaced by natural gas, and natural gas in the long-term will be replaced by wind and solar energy sources. The United States has entered an era of increasing impacts from climate change that are directly related to the burning of fossil fuels and especially coal. But the main drives for reduction in coal use include automation in mining and the low cost of the lower-emissions natural gas alternative. Natural gas has its own set of environmental, human health, and community impacts that revolve around fracking in tight shale basins. All of these impacts are a further cause to increase renewable clean energy sources in the United States.
KeywordsCoal Natural gas Wind Solar Carbon economy Carbon dioxide Reserves Resources Mine Climate Methane Production Depletion
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