Posted by: Lawyer Sanders | October 6, 2009

Kentucky environmental attorney Sanders says US EPA is dazed and confused over the regulatory status of coal combusion wastes from utility plants.

 

TVA has announced that its cleanup of this coal combustion products is going to cost about $1 Billion dollars.  At the same time, EPA is promoting the reuse of the same material.  What gives in Washington??

TVA has announced that its cleanup of this coal combustion products is going to cost about $1 Billion dollars. At the same time, EPA is promoting the reuse of the same material. What gives in Washington??

Not counting air emissions, the electric utility industry generates approximately 125 million tons of wastes from burning coal each year.  The most common wastes are in the form of fly ash, bottom ash, boiler slag, and flue gas desulfurization gypsum.  Nearly half of that total – 50 million tons – is re-used in everything from road construction to (industry claims) tooth paste.  The other half is landfilled either in solid waste dumps or in huge ash ponds.

Did you know that the Coal Combustion Products Partnership program is a collaborative effort between EPA and the American Coal Ash Association, Utility Solid Waste Activities Group, Department of Energy, Federal Highway Administration, the Electric Power Research Institute, and the United States Department of Agriculture Agricultural Research Service to promote the beneficial use of coal combustion products?

If EPA is promoting coal combustion products as safe for beneficial reuse, why is TVA planning to spend around one billion dollars to clean up the coal ash spill in Kingston, Tennessee?  Am I the only one out there that is confused by EPA’s split personality on coal combustion products?  Are coal combustion products a waste that is high in heavy metals or not? 

 I have no problem with mixing the material into concrete or drywall board where they are stabilized, but as an ingredient in toothpaste?  The EPA’s split personality on the issue is hypocritical and confusing to the public and regulated community.

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