How Will Hurricane Irma Impact Coal Ash in her Path?

Last year, Hurricane Matthew spilled coal waste into the Neuse River and burst the dirt embankment of a cooling pond at the H.F. Lee power plant in Goldsboro, NC. As record-breaking Hurricane Irma barrels toward Florida and likely up toward Atlanta, at least 33 coal-fired power plants lie in her potential path, highlighting the dangers [...]

Walking in Memphis—Just Feet Above a Coal Ash Cesspool

Memphis residents now have another reason to sing the blues. Last week, the nation’s largest public utility, Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA), admitted that the groundwater beneath its Allen coal-burning power plant is poisoned with astronomically high amounts of arsenic. Levels of the potent carcinogen measure nearly 400 times the federal limit for drinking water. In addition, lead in the groundwater is more than four times the standard.

Pruitt EPA Should Deny New Utility Move to Weaken Federal Coal Ash Rule

Like last month’s stay on the water discharge rule, a potential stay on the Coal Ash Rule extends unconscionable risk for the people who live near coal ash pits, which can rupture or leak toxics into drinking water, while pandering to corporate utilities that have gotten away with dangerous waste handling for decades.

Pruitt EPA’s Water Pollution Delay Extends Uncertainty for Southeast Coal Plants

Since 1982, little has changed about the toxic pollution coal-fired power plants are allowed to dump in water, although change was on its way. Unfortunately, if EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt has his way, our waterways and our health will remain threatened by our nation’s leading source of toxic water pollution – coal fired power plants. We will have to keep on waiting for modern, updated protections and coal plant operators face continued uncertainty over their compliance obligations – uncertainty that may actually accelerate coal’s decline. In early May, Environmental groups challenged the legality Administrator Pruitt’s stay.

In the Southeast, many power plants’ operators were already preparing to meet new 2015 standards, which would go into effect in 2018, updating pollution control technology at their plants and working with state agencies to update state water discharge permits. The 2015 Effluent Limitation Guidelines (ELGs), which represents the first update to these regulations since 1982, nearly eliminates dumping of ash-contaminated wastewater, and for the first time, limits the discharge of toxic heavy metals that come from removing toxics from the air pollution stream and trapping them in sludge as part of the wastewater stream.

What’s Wrong With This Picture? TVA’s So-Called Coal Ash “Solution”

The Tennessee Valley Authority is planning to “clean up” 13.4 million tons of coal ash by capping it in place. Our new animation shows why cap in place is not a solution for unlined ash pits: it doesn’t keep ash separated from groundwater. Click the image on the left to watch the 30-second clip, and then [...]

Guest Post: Southeast states fight to avoid becoming coal ash dumping ground

“The Southeast does not want to become the low-cost, low-environmental protection refuge for the nation’s coal ash…”

How Solar Could Help Replace Coal in Central Florida

Lakeland, FL leaders now acknowledge that retiring the McIntosh 3 coal-fired power generator is a question of when, not if. Lakeland Electric, which operates the 364MW plant and co-owns it with Orlando Utilities Commission, is poised to lead Florida utilities away from coal and toward cleaner energy choices, but thus far is hesitating. Solar energy, combined with gas or with cutting edge batteries, could shift the balance for this forward-thinking utility.

Democracy for Sale Screens Across North Carolina

This is a guest blog from Working Films, originally posted here. SACE is excited to partner with Working Films and several allies on the Asheville, NC screening on Jan. 25th. See Facebook event page for more details on this specific screening.

Top 3 Coal Ash Stories to Follow in 2017

2017 is shaping up to be an important year for coal ash in the Southeast. Here are the three critical stories to watch.

What Is Your Electric Utility Planning for its Coal Ash?

Utilities in the southeast are already starting to “close” toxic coal ash pits. We calculated how much coal ash will be excavated and how much will be left in mostly unlined pits.