The Environmental Integrity Project and Earthjustice, joined by NRDC, the Sierra Club, Environmental Defense, and 104 other environmental groups, have asked U.S. EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson to move quickly to regulate coal ash, also known as coal combustion waste (CCW). A letter signed by the groups and delivered to EPA on March 3, 2009, identifies twelve principles to guide the development of federal standards. These include the phaseout of surface impoundments, locating disposal sites away from groundwater or surface water, requiring liners, leachate collection systems and adequate monitoring, and requiring industry to assume long term liability for cleanup.
Mar 3, 2009
The recent disaster at TVA’s Kingston Plant stands as a startling reminder that federal standards for CCW are long overdue. For too long, power companies have been able to dump CCW, laden with a host of toxic metals like arsenic, selenium, lead, mercury, and boron, in unlined mines, quarries, landfills, and surface impoundments. Without federal standards governing disposal practices, contaminants can leak or spill from these dump sites, threatening human health, natural resources and wildlife.