Everything has it's dangers.
imagine if it was a hydro powered damn there? we wouldn't have been hearing that nuclear was bad (not so much of a media frenzy), but everyone living in the shadow of the damn would have been washed out to sea.
to be honest, about the only thing that coal actually has going for it (in terms of future generation, [and aside from the physical time scales the stations need to be built in]) is that the power station physically couldn't go into meltdown.
whilst (normally operating) coal stations release more radioactivity than (normally operating) nuclear stations, it's the cost of the risk *if* it does go wrong.
then you're not looking at slightly elevated background levels, you're looking at possibly immediate release of deadly levels. (possibly at the level where it may be fatal within hours), released in seconds, huge evacuation areas, massive clean-up costs...
Incidentally, (as if by strange coincidence or magic). I received an invitation to a lecture today.
A presentation/discussion session on the ways and means of generating energy for the next 20 years in the UK, (held jointly by the Institute of Mechanical Engineers[branch of the IET], The Institute of Chemical Engineers and the Institute of Civil engineers).
free to anyone who can get themselves to reading university. (open to non-members, registration required, 1st come 1st serve)
The Great Energy Debate - The IET
A.K.A you're chance to hear from people who actually know what their talking about (not randoms on the internet like me). and your chance to influence the kind of people that do influence the government.