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.

Coal ash protesters arrested in Puerto Rico

Dozens of residents of Peñuelas, Puerto Rico and their supporters were arrested today [November 23] for protests against the trucking of AES Puerto Rico, L.P. coal ash waste to the Peñuelas Valley Landfill.

Public window into Florida utility planning opens, shuts

While Floridians await a Public Service Commission (PSC) ruling later this year on a 24% rate hike for Florida Power & Light, the Commission is also considering another matter: acceptance of Ten Year Site Plans from the largest state utilities. The Ten Year Site Plan is a summary of Florida’s largest power companies’ resource plans for the next ten years. This year’s Site Plans rely on continuing to run old coal plants and building more natural gas fired power.

Don’t care about climate? 3 reasons to shut down this Georgia coal plant anyway

Between the climate talks about to start in Paris and the EPA hearing on aspects of the Clean Power Plan in Atlanta this week, there’s been a lot of talk about climate and carbon. But whether you think limiting carbon emissions is important or not, there are plenty of other reasons to phase out Georgia [...]

EPA Launches New Environmental Justice Mapping Tool

Below is a guest post from Stephanie Maddin, Legislative Counsel for Earthjustice. SACE chose to share this post to draw attention to this new resource provided by EPA, as well as the specific impacts of environmental justice present in the Southeastern United States. The article was originally posted in June 2015 and can be found [...]

Lynn Ringenberg, M.D.: Coal Ash Pollution Needs Tighter Regulation

This post, written by Lynn Ringenberg, originally appeared in the South Florida Sun Sentinel on August 5, 2014. You can access the original article here.  A national epidemic has come to Florida. It is a silent threat, growing every day. Pollution contaminates our waters, poisons our fish and wildlife and increases our risk of cancer and other diseases. The culprit is coal [...]

All Aboard the Roller Coaster: Ala. Coal Week in Review

News about Alabama’s coal – its alleged divine origins, televised misinformation from elected officials, pleas to the federal Environmental Protection Agency, closure and conversion of coal plants, and now, a lawsuit against EPA – has been flowing fast and furious over the past week, showing no signs of stopping. Here’s a quick play-by-play to get [...]

NC’s Coal Ash Disaster: 6 Months Later

Six months ago some of our worst fears became true (for a second time) when 140,000 tons of coal ash and contaminated wastewater spilled into the Dan River near Eden, North Carolina. As the spill continued for almost 2 weeks, a dark grey plume travelled 70 miles downstream threatening drinking water supplies and the river’s [...]

Southeast Summer Coal Ash Roundup

Since the Dan River disaster hit almost 6 months ago, North Carolina has been front and center in coal ash news. So much so that it might seem that NC is the only Southeastern state with coal ash troubles. Unfortunately, North Carolina’s dangerous coal ash sites are not unique in the region, which is home [...]