The paper provides perspective regarding the environmental acceptability of atmospheric-pressure fluidized-bed boilers, with particular emphasis on the application of this technology as a technique for utilizing coal in the industrial sector. It reviews emission sources within the process, and applicable Federal environmental regulations. It summarizes available information on emissions and control of SO2, NOx, and particulates from atmospheric fluidized-bed combustion units, as well as information on the environmental characteristics of the solid residue that is produced. It is concluded that atmospheric fluidized-bed boilers should be technically capable of meeting existing New Source Performance Standards for SO2, NOx, and (probably) particulate emissions from large coal-fired steam generators. Preliminary data on the solid residue suggest that the residue should not present a disposal problem from the standpoint of certain leachate characteristics, but that further consideration of other leachate characteristics is necessary to ensure that disposal problems do not exist.