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) [...]

Coal Ash and Summer Fun Just Don’t Mix

If you’re anything like me, this is the time of year when you’re gearing up to get out on your favorite waterway for some summer fun. Whether you’re tubing, paddling, fishing, swimming or just taking in the scenery; our region’s rivers, lakes and streams are the perfect place to cool off and enjoy the great [...]

Thirsty Vogtle nuclear reactors would guzzle more water from the Savannah River

Southern Company’s water-hogging Plant Vogtle aims to get even thirstier if the proposed two new nuclear reactors under construction receive approval from the Georgia Environmental Protection Division (EPD) for a large water withdrawal permit from the already imperiled Savannah River. The state agency is considering a permit request for up to 74 million gallons per [...]

Dan River spill spurs major ash clean up orders

Over a month has passed since a broken stormwater pipe under coal ash lagoons at Duke Energy’s retired Dan River power station began spewing 140,000 tons of toxic waste into the Dan River*. The nation’s 3rd largest coal ash disaster has been fraught with scandal and news about the intimate relationship between Duke Energy and NC Department [...]

EPA Agrees to Deadline for Coal Ash Rule

This week the Environmental Protection Agency agreed to finalize first-ever federal regulation for the disposal of coal ash, by December 19, 2014; settling a lawsuit brought by Earthjustice on behalf of SACE and other environmental and public health groups. While the settlement does not dictate the content of the final regulation, it confirms the agency will [...]

Save Weiss Lake, Build a Wind Farm

Weiss Lake (located in Cherokee and Etowah Counties, Alabama) has the noble distinction of “Crappie Fishing Capital of the World” and is the lifeblood of Northeast Alabama’s tourism. The lake was created in the 1950s and 1960s as Alabama Power developed a hydroelectric dam on the Coosa River. Several organizations have developed in an effort to improve and protect Weiss Lake and the surrounding watershed. Wind farms may provide a new opportunity to advance those protection efforts. Wind farms use modern technology for electric generation, emit no air pollution and consume no water, and at the same time, offer local communities economic development that can spur reinvestment into local programs and infrastructure; key factors that make wind energy a clean power resource and a new tool to help save Weiss Lake.

Fukushima nuclear disaster’s political impacts…not only in Japan

Earlier this month we gave a brief technical update of the ongoing effects of the Fukushima nuclear disaster that began nearly three years ago. The situation continues to spiral out of control, as yet another radioactive water leak was discovered since that last update. This time the leaking water had been previously used to cool the melted [...]

Five year since Kingston: A December to Remember

This opinion piece was written by Ulla Reeves, SACE’s High Risk Energy Program Director, and was published in the Knoxville News Sentinel on December 22, 2014. This is the final post in a five part series commemorating the fifth anniversary of the Kingston coal ash disaster, highlighting communities throughout the Southeast impacted by coal ash [...]

Five years since Kingston: Perry County, Alabama’s Toxic Tragedy

This week marks the fifth anniversary of the Kingston coal ash spill, one of the worst environmental disasters in American history. In the weeks leading up to the anniversary, we have been posting a series of blogs highlighting communities throughout the Southeast impacted by coal ash and its detrimental effects. Thanks to the residents of Perry County, Alabama [...]

Sutton Case Study: Coal Ash Harms and Kills Fish

A new study released on December 3, 2013, shows that toxic coal ash from Duke Energy’s L.V. Sutton Power Station is seriously harming fish and wildlife in Lake Sutton, a popular fishing destination near Wilmington, NC. Unfortunately, this is just the most recent addition to the growing body of evidence that coal ash is leaking into [...]