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  [Mercury > Priorities for Action > Coal combustion ]

Mercury Control from Coal Combustion

Issue   

 Burning of coal is the largest single anthropogenic source of mercury air emissions, having more than tripled since 1970. Coal burning for power generation is increasing alongside economic growth. The releases from power plants and industrial boilers represent today roughly a quarter of mercury releases to atmosphere. Household burning of coal is also a significant source of mercury emissions and a human health hazard.

Although coal contains only small concentrations of mercury, it is burnt in very large volumes.

Up to 95% of mercury releases from power plants can be reduced. This can be achieved by improving coal and plant performance, and optimizing control systems for other pollutants.

 

Partnership Priority Actions

  • Support globally significant emissions reduction though existing multi-poluttant reduction approaches.
  • Providing technically sound information on cost effective appoaches for enhancing reductions of mercury emissions, particularly for developing nations and countries with economies in transition.

Partnership Area Lead

 

Dr. Lesley Sloss                                       

International Energy Agency,

Clean Coal Centre

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