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Legal Fight For Long Overdue Coal Ash Protections

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Case Number # 2309

A cloud of highly toxic coal ash is seen blowing like a sandstorm straight at the homes on the Moapa River Reservation. (Photo by Moapa Band of Paiutes)
A cloud of highly toxic coal ash is seen blowing like a sandstorm straight at the homes on the Moapa River Reservation. (Photo by Moapa Band of Paiutes)

Every day, power plants generate over 400,000 tons of toxic coal ash. Most of this waste, which is filled with arsenic, mercury, lead, selenium, cadmium and other pollutants that cause cancer and more, is simply dumped into unlined and unmonitored landfills and ponds.

There are more than 600 unregulated coal ash dumps across America; 186 of these sites have had proven contamination at nearby aquifers, rivers, lakes, streams and creeks. Despite the dangers to local communities that drink this contaminated water, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has still not adopted any federal safeguards to protect human health and the environment.

On behalf of 11 national and local environmental and public health groups, Earthjustice is suing the federal government to set a deadline to adopt federal coal ash protections.

Press Releases

Thursday, August 26, 2010
39 additional sites where coal ash is contaminating water are discovered, a total of 70 sites since February far exceed previous EPA estimates
Monday, June 21, 2010
Leaves open the possibility that at least half of all toxic ash will remain unregulated
Wednesday, May 26, 2010
Vote comes as proposed federal regulations, new information about additional Georgia coal ash waste ponds emerge
Wednesday, May 5, 2010
Arsenic, among others, leached at 1,800 times federal safe drinking water levels
Tuesday, May 4, 2010
After years of delay, tragedy in Tennessee, EPA proposes regulatory options but stops short of giving clear protections for communities
Thursday, April 15, 2010
Unprecedented delay and industry influence leaves millions of Americans exposed to toxic coal ash pollution.
Wednesday, February 24, 2010
Sites found in 14 states, significantly increasing pressure on OMB to release delayed EPA rule
Thursday, January 28, 2010
Demand EPA to release regulations as promised
Monday, December 21, 2009
Spill in Tennessee Dec. 22, 2008, sent 5.4 million cubic yards of coal ash into nearby homes, rivers, and communities
Wednesday, December 2, 2009
Industry seeks to protect "trade secrets" in waste