Describe one way in which the process of removing coal from the ground affects the environment?


Question: Describe one way in which the process of removing coal from the ground affects the environment?

One significant environmental impact of coal mining is the creation of acid mine drainage (AMD). This occurs when sulfide minerals present in coal seams are exposed to air and water during mining, leading to the formation of sulfuric acid. The acidic water can then leach heavy metals from the surrounding rocks, resulting in contaminated groundwater and surface water. This contamination can harm aquatic life, disrupt ecosystems, and make water unsafe for human consumption and agricultural use. The process also lowers the pH of nearby lakes and streams, which can lead to a decline in biodiversity and the deterioration of water quality.

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