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North Antelope Rochelle Mine in Wyoming’s Powder River Basin. (EcoFlight)
Update May 21, 2024

Coal Mining Winding Down in the Nation’s Largest Coal-Producing Region

The Biden administration announced that it will end coal leasing in the Powder River Basin in Montana and Wyoming, keeping billions of tons of highly polluting coal in the ground.

Changemakers call for the EPA to hold utilities accountable for their coal ash pollution, on the day of an in-person public hearing held by the agency in Chicago on Jun. 28, 2023. (Jamie Kelter Davis for Earthjustice)
feature April 25, 2024

‘Do Your Job, EPA’: Stories From the Frontlines of Coal Ash

By law, before government regulations are adopted or changed, agencies must ask the public — you — to weigh in.

The aftermath of the devastating coal ash spill at the TVA Kingston Fossil Plant near Kingston, Tenn., in 2008. More than 1 billion gallons of toxic coal ash sludge burst from a dam, sweeping away homes and contaminating two rivers. (Dot Griffith/ Appalachian Voice via United Mountain Defense)
feature April 25, 2024

Coal Ash Contaminates Our Lives

Coal ash is what is left behind when power plants burn coal for energy, It is a toxic mix of carcinogens, neurotoxins, and other hazardous pollutants.

The now-closed Waukegan Generating Station, on the shore of Lake Michigan in Waukegan, Illinois. The coal fired power plant still has unregulated coal ash ponds threatening the environment. (Jamie Kelter Davis for Earthjustice)
Update April 25, 2024

New Rule Will Force Cleanup of Hundreds of Toxic Coal Ash Dump Sites

A major victory for communities living near coal ash plants, the rule closes a loophole that left over half of coal ash exempt from federal clean-up requirements.

The North Antelope Rochelle Mine, located in Campbell County, Wyoming, about 65 miles south of Gillette in the Powder River Basin.
(EcoFlight)
Press Release: Victory May 16, 2024

Biden Administration to End Coal Leasing in Powder River Basin

BLM decision will keep nearly 6 billion tons of highly polluting coal in the ground

Map of power plant sites across the United States that have regulated and / or legacy coal ash units. (Caroline Weinberg / Earthjustice)
feature April 25, 2024

Where are Coal Ash Dump Sites?

Use this map to understand where coal ash might be stored near you.

feature April 25, 2024

Coal Ash in the United States: Addressing Coal Plants’ Hazardous Legacy

Earthjustice analyzed industry data to explain, state by state, how and where coal ash is disposed and which dump sites are not yet monitored or regulated.

Andrew Rehn, right, of the Prairie Rivers Network and Lan Richart of Eco-Justice Collaborative paddle past toxic coal ash waste seepage on Illinois' Vermilion River in 2018. (Tribune Content Agency LLC / Alamy Stock Photo)
Press Release March 14, 2024

Appellate Court Affirms Illinois’ Strong Coal Ash Protections, Rejecting Coal Company Attacks

Community advocates urge Illinois EPA to swiftly enforce rules

document May 2, 2024

Complaint: Hawaiian Petrel – Grand Wailea Resort

A coalition of conservation groups filed a second lawsuit to protect Hawaiian petrels (ʻuaʻu) from dangerous lights used by the Grand Wailea Resort on Maui. Hawaiian petrels are protected as an endangered species under the Endangered Species Act. Today’s lawsuit was filed by Earthjustice on behalf of Conservation Council for Hawaiʻi and the Center for Biological Diversity.

Brayton Point Power Station in Somerset, Mass., in 2012. (Denis Tangney Jr. / Getty Images)
From the Experts: Victory April 25, 2024

EPA Finalized New Wastewater Treatment Standards for Coal-fired Power Plants

A 15-year legal fight to curb toxic wastewater to protect drinking water.

In the News: Inside Climate News May 19, 2024

In Louisiana’s ‘Cancer Alley,’ Excitement Over New Emissions Rules Is Tempered By a Legal Challenge to Federal Environmental Justice Efforts

Debbie Chizewer, Managing Attorney, Midwest Office: “It’s just another attack on one of the most important civil rights, environmental justice tools under Title VI of the Civil Rights Act. It’s not a coincidence that the states who signed onto this petition have problematic records of allowing industrial activity to harm low-income communities of color. And…

Una pila de cenizas de carbón, aproximadamente de una altura de cinco pisos, se encuentra junto a la central eléctrica AES-PR en la ciudad sureña de Guayama, Puerto Rico. (Mabette Colón)
feature April 16, 2024

Cenizas de Carbón Tóxicas en Puerto Rico: El Peligroso Legado de la Planta de Carbón de AES-PR

Applied Energy Services continúa contaminando el aire, el suelo y el agua en Puerto Rico con cenizas de carbón tóxicas.

Vac truck excavation work near the town pavillion in Town of Pines, Indiana. (U.S. EPA)
Press Release December 11, 2023

EPA: Radiation from Coal Ash Poses Cancer Risk

More than 150 public interest groups urge the EPA to ban the widespread use of toxic coal ash as structural fill

Speakers at the listening session held by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency on the proposed repeal of the Clean Power Plan, in San Francisco on Feb. 28, 2018.
(Martin do Nascimento / Earthjustice)
feature June 13, 2023

Guide to Preparing for Public Hearings on the Legacy CCR Rule

What to expect at EPA’s virtual and in-person hearings on the Legacy CCR Surface Impoundment Rule

Press Release April 1, 2024

Advocates File Complaint to Challenge Southwest Power Pool’s Discriminatory Renewable Energy Accreditation

SPP failed for a second time to accurately accredit its generating resources, continues to discriminate against cleaner resources

A five-story pile of coal ash lies next to the AES-PR power plant in the southern town of Guayama, Puerto Rico. (Mabette Colón)
feature May 4, 2023

Toxic Coal Ash in Puerto Rico: The Hazardous Legacy of the AES-PR Coal Plant

Applied Energy Services continues to contaminate the air, soil, and water in Puerto Rico with toxic coal ash.

The NIPSCO R.M. Schahfer Generating Station in Wheatfield, Indiana, in 2018. (Alex Garcia for Earthjustice)
feature May 4, 2023

Toxic Coal Ash Near the Great Lakes: Addressing Coal Plants’ Hazardous Legacy

Coal ash is leaching unsafe levels of toxic pollutants into groundwater at 91% of coal plants. There are 88 coal ash dumpsites within two miles of one of the Great Lakes.

FirstEnergy's Little Blue Run coal ash impoundment, built in 1975 and containing coal ash from the Bruce Mansfield Power Plant, is the largest unlined coal ash pond in the United States, spanning Pennsylvania and West Virginia. (Chris Jordan-Bloch / Earthjustice)
feature May 3, 2023

Toxic Coal Ash in Pennsylvania: Addressing Coal Plants’ Hazardous Legacy

Coal ash is leaching unsafe levels of toxic pollutants into groundwater at 91% of coal plants. Pennsylvania is one of the nation’s top coal ash-generating states, with more than 67 coal ash dumpsites.