Reducing air pollution from coal-fired power plants is an absolutely essential environmental aim, but it’s a red herring if the pollutants just end up in another waste stream. At the Hatfield’s Ferry coal plant in Pennsylvania, new air pollution scrubbers remove pollutants from the plant’s smokestack emissions, but Allegheny Energy Supply Co.—the plant’s owners—propose to dump the scrubber waste into the local Monongahela River.
This wastewater is laden with heavy metals including arsenic, cadmium, mercury, selenium, copper, hexavalent chromium, lead and thallium that are toxic to people as well as fish and wildlife. Cleaning up air pollution should not come at the cost of polluted water.
On behalf of conservationists and local citizens, Earthjustice is participating in administrative appeals of the Clean Water Act permit that was issued by the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection to Hatfield’s Ferry.