Fumes from coal-fired power stations cause 1,600 premature deaths each year in the UK and more than 350,000 lost working days, a new report has claimed.
The Health and Environment Alliance (HEAL) said burning coal adds to poor air quality, and is having a direct effect on health.
More than 18,000 premature deaths in the European Union each year are linked to emissions from coal-fired power plants, said the Brussels based alliance of health and other groups.
Burning coal releases a number of air pollutants that are harmful to health, said the report.
The study was published ahead of a vote in Parliament later this week on an amendment to the Energy Bill, which would force coal-fired power stations to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions and produce less pollution.