Decisions, Decisions at TVA’s Shawnee Coal Plant

As 2014 draws to a close, the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) has been busy working on making an important decision at its Shawnee coal plant in Paducah, KY.  December 9th marked the end of the public comment period for TVA’s draft Environmental Assessment (EA) to determine whether or not it should retire or retrofit two coal [...]

Countdown to coal ash rules from EPA

We are exactly 9 days away from the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) official release of final rules for coal ash regulation that have been in the works ever since the catastrophic Kingston disaster of 2008. Since then, it has taken almost 6 years and countless efforts by citizens and advocates to sound the alarm on [...]

TVA’s Watts Bar — the last old reactor of the 20th Century

At the end of October, I was able to attend a briefing of the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) Commissioners on the project status of TVA’s Watts Bar 2, which has been under construction since 1973 and was most recently “revived” in 2007. Amazingly, TVA and the nuclear industry is touting this as the first [...]

Hundreds Gather in Memphis to Discuss Environmental Justice Issues

This blog was co-authored by Sandra Upchurch, SACE’s Memphis Energy Organizer. As fall descended on Memphis, over 250 people attended the Sierra Club’s 13th Annual Grassroots Community Conference. This was the first year the conference was hosted by the University of Memphis, which joined Sierra Club and other community groups in discussing this year’s conference [...]

Kentucky Group Studies Health Effects of Aging TVA Coal Plant

This guest blog was written by Deborah Payne, MPH, Health Coordinator at the Kentucky Environmental Foundation (KEF). For more detail on KEF’s Shawnee Health Impacts Assessment, please register and attend a free webinar on November 20, 2014 at 11am ET. Download the full report here. In 1957, the price of gas was just 24 cents a gallon, [...]

Will the EPA Coal Ash Rule Survive?

This blog was originally posted on October 28, 2014 by Lisa Evans of Earthjustice. Sometime after midnight, the White House made it official—its review of the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) coal ash rule has begun. The quiet posting of the rule by the White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) sets in motion OMB’s [...]

New Customizable Coal Ash Reports Highlight the Danger in Our Back Yards

Today, as EPA’s deadline to finalize coal ash rules rapidly approaches, SACE unveiled a new tool to help concerned citizens, activists, policymakers, and reporters better understand the potential hazards of toxic coal ash waste throughout our region on our interactive coal ash website SoutheastCoalAsh.org. The new Create-Your-Own Coal Ash Report feature on our website analyzes detailed data [...]

Florida Citizens Raise Pitchforks and Torches, Protesting Utilities Gone Wild

Last Wednesday, 200 or so St. Petersburg and Tampa Bay Area residents raised their pitchforks in protest outside Duke Energy Florida’s headquarters in St. Petersburg. The protest was in response to years of Duke’s blatant disregard for customers’ interests, including gross mismanagement of the Crystal River nuclear plant and canceled Levy County nuclear plant (costing [...]

Why the Pitchforks are coming out in Florida

As the Executive Director of the Southern Alliance for Clean Energy (SACE) for over 20 years, I pride myself and the organization in our capacity to work collaboratively with utilities and decision makers to achieve strong results. SACE has a long history working with utilities in all of our Southeastern states, and we have achieved [...]

Coal industry inspires easy solution to droughts

So there’s this new group, CoalBlue, which claims that “A clean-energy, low-carbon world can only be achieved with clean, low-carbon coal.” I got to thinking, what is low-carbon coal? According to the World Coal Association, “Coal is a combustible, sedimentary, organic rock, which is composed mainly of carbon, hydrogen and oxygen.” So, coal without (much) [...]