Guy Raz

Miners Weather The Slow Burn Of Coal's Demise

Jul 14, 2012

At some point today, you will probably flip on a light switch. That simple action connects you to the oldest and most plentiful source of American electricity: coal.

Since the early 1880s — when Edison and Tesla pioneered the distribution of electrical power into our homes — most of that power has come from the process of burning coal.

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A flight departure board at the Dallas-Fort Worth Airport yesterday told the story. One word was repeated again and again: cancelled, cancelled, cancelled.

INSKEEP: That was just one sign of chaos, as up to a dozen tornadoes spun through the area. Amazingly, nobody was reported killed.